1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Fat Tug IPA - Driftwood Brewery

Not Rated.
Fat Tug IPAFat Tug IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

275 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 275
Reviews: 83
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 8.05%
Wants: 119
Gots: 38 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Driftwood Brewery visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Fat Tug is a northwest style India Pale Ale that is characterized by an intense hop profile of grapefruit & melon and restrained malt notes. At 7 % alc/vol and 80+ IBUs this beer delivers layers of aroma and flavor that is sure to satisfy anyone with a thirst for all things hoppy!

(Beer added by: ericj551 on 10-26-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 201-225 | 226-250 | 251-275  | next › last »
Ratings: 275 | Reviews: 83 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DaveJanssen
4/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz poured into a 16oz nonic pint. Just moved up to Victoria and seeing that this was the top beer of the Great Canadian Beer festival and it is brewed in Victoria, i figured I had to give it a try. Best by February 12th 2012.

Ar: Resin, hop bitterness, grapefruit citrus, mild floral hop, very hoppy and citrus oriented

Ap: Medium off white head, good retention, good lace, very mild haze light copper

T: Strong citrus hops, hop resin, piney, grapefruit, tropical fruit, alcohol hints toward the end, clean pleasant malt base, estery, mango, strong nectarine, excellent fruityness, nice bitterness and resin in the finish, long after the sip is over the hop resin still lingers pleasantly, dry

M: Medium body, resinous, pleasant bitterness, medium carbonation, long finish

O: This is definitely toward the west coast aggressively hopped drier IPA, which i am very happy about. Clean, crisp, solid hop presence and good lingering finish. A very well done IPA.

DaveJanssen, Sep 15, 2011
Photo of ritzkiss
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best before: 01/04/12 - surprise by my lovely wife from her recent trip to Victoria.

Pours a cloudy, orange - almost Nestea like in the way it fades at the bottom of the glass. Thin head, not much there but manages to throw some patches of lacing.

Nose is sweet and tropical, hints of citrus rind and pine. West-coast influenced all the way, aromatic but not perhaps as involved and complex as some exemplars.

Wonderful mix of tropical hops and bittering pine and grapefruit rind in the flavor, leaning to pine. Still a nice caramel sweet backdrop with hints of papaya and pineapple, malt is not too heavy though - lets the hops shine as the star, resiny and full of hop-burp goodness. Just a hint of alcohol in there as well, pretty smooth body, light carbonation. Great IPA, would by my go to I think - along with Red Racer. Canadian standout.

ritzkiss, Jul 28, 2011
Photo of harrymel
3.73/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by: 01/04/12

A: pours an apricot honey ale with less than a single finger of soapy white head. This dissipates to a broken sheet of the same atop a near excellent clarity brew. Spotty lace.

S: sweet biscuit malts and bubble gum and citrus hops. Best nose I've had in BC so far.

T: nice bitter pinch with plenty of those bubble gum flavors and citric rinds. Just a hint of the malt comes thru this beast making it almost like a summer American ipa, but a blend of west coast and great lakes style hop scheduling.

M: really thin, moderate carb and dry finish. Would like a little more body.

O: probably the best ipa I've had from the few breweries I've sampled here in Victoria. They could probably sell this stateside without any trouble (on tap).

harrymel, Jul 19, 2011
Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.48/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: 1/2" creamy white and soapy head over cloudy amber liquid.

S: Citrus and pine hops and the smell of malt. Very refreshing and clean smelling.

T: Front loaded with pine and bitter hops, and backloaded with a malty and nutty aftertaste.

M: Medium thickness, and medium carbonation.

O: Refreshing IPA,with piney and purfumey hops. Not a session beer.

DaftCaskBC, Jul 09, 2011
Photo of stakem
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into a pint glass, thanks to psiweaver for the opportunity to try this generous extra via a recent trade. No freshness dating to be found and it appears to be filtered/no sediment in the bottle.

This brew appears a clear color of copper with a creamy topping of 2 fingers worth of rich yellowish stained head. There is a light amount of haze keeping this brew from being perfectly clear and bubbles rise to the surface in support of the head. As the cap slowly fades, it produces patches and spots of lacework all over the glass.

The aroma of this brew is bright citrus hop notes that come across with a touch of pine and resinous rindy characteristics. There is a mild catty scent that dare i say suggests a touch of stinky cheese in there as well. A touch of grassiness lingers throughout which adds some nice depth. Overall quite enjoyable. As it warms, it picks up some toasted caramel malt scents that provide a light sweetness to this brew's scent.

The taste of this brew is bitter with a rindy touch that immediately draws thoughts of alcohol grapefruit juice upon my first sip. It lingers with a resinous cling inside the mouth that turns a bit catty mixed with grassy notes but maintains a bitter fruity flavor consistently. There is a very mild sweetness to this brew that is a cross between rindy fruits like grapefruit and a sweetness somewhat like a toasted type of caramel malt. This brew finishes crisp and refreshing which is interesting for something in the 7% range.

There is a solid warming factor from the alcohol's inclusion, that 7% abv is felt through and through without any suppression. However, the alcohol is well integrated and enjoyable with the flavors that exist. It is medium bodied and modestly carbonated. Overall well balanced and enjoyable, I would certainly drink this again if given the opportunity.

stakem, May 15, 2011
Photo of JayAre46
4.03/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

shout out to rutager and thank you, 22 oz bomber split between myself and fellow BA and this review is coming from the notes...orange haze with golden shit coming through (i really wrote that wtf) i dunno. 2 fingers of off white head reduced to a layer tight bubbles. did not show great lacing

A - sweet fruits up front, touch of lemony aroma, more citrus and hints of pineapple in particular. Pale malt background very subtle which is submissive to the citrusy aromas.

T - The citrus is much less dominant that was present in the nose, getting a piney sap which is new, hints of orange peel dryness along with a sharp bitterness in the back, again the malts are there...barely... but push for a balance. no alcohol is present.

M - light to medium body moderate carbonation, slight prickly finish

O - this brew is solid and i would like to have it again, the orange peel dryness is a bit too dominant for me but that may vary from batch to batch. Nothing jumped out to me, i hate to say this because the beer is good, but this one may be just another face in the crowd.

JayAre46, May 12, 2011
Photo of mikesgroove
4.6/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another new one for the day, this was the big DIPA we were missing yesterday afternoon so we needed to find one to make a grand appearance and here we had it. Served cold and split into two pint glasses, this was consumed on 04/24/2011.

What a nice pour that came out of this one. A lighter than I would have expected amber color, was almost a golden pale with loads of carbonation and a huge billowing white head that sat on top with a large amount of foam that stuck to the sides and dripped down the glass.

A huge aroma then came wafting through the air. Lots of orange rind, grapefruit, and hints of lemon that layer on top of a light grain and bready base that offers a nice touch of balance but without distracting from the real gem here that was the since hop. Very light for as strong as it was, I really did not expect that at all. It was almost trying to deceive you with its full strength as the light hops and lingering dryness in the flavor left you thirsting for more, but at over 10% you were quickly reminded of its real strength.

Overall a very solid DIPA. It comes with a long line of simcoe forward big ipas that have come before it but this one really works. Besides you have to love the Canadian aspect to it, overall a hit and a nice way to roll into the mid afternoon.

mikesgroove, Apr 25, 2011
Photo of peensteen
4.1/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange colour, nice fluffy white head, good lace on the glass. The nose on this is incredible, bursting with citrus, ornage, tangerine, notes of pine and a good malt back to this. Taste is mostly pine and not how the nose would lead you to believe, slight citrus, grapefruit, good hoppy bitterness, malt is there, good balance here. Medium weight, nice slick hop oil, carb a touch high, good overall feel. Good IPA overall, solid bitterness and quite enjoyable.

peensteen, Apr 24, 2011
Photo of michaeledoan
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a beautiful coppery orange from bottle to oversized wineglass. An inch and a half off white head which disappeared in about a minute 30. Unfiltered? Foggy appearance.

Detected scents of apricots and sweet fruits. Obvious floral bouquet of hop aromas. Very pleasing.

Tasted very nice. A definite bitterness at the back of the tongue with light pine. Just right. Again, apricot and this beer really reminded me of DFH Aprihop. Malty and sweet at the tip of the tongue. Well balanced.

Balanced again with a medium body. Very comfortable.

A very well finished beer. More hops than malt, but balanced by the sweet fruit/apricot jam flavours that they were able to produce. All around enjoyable and highly recommended.

michaeledoan, Apr 24, 2011
Photo of dcloeren
3.73/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Split a bomber with JayAre46. Thanks son

A: poured a hazy burnt orange with a finger of eggshell white foamy head. The carbonation bubbles slowly make their way through the syrup to the top. Head slowly made it's way to a thin film and left some spider webs along the way

S: orange juice, caramel covered grapefruit, pineapple and floral hops dominate. Subtle malt and pine background

T: floral and pine off the bat complimented with orange peel and grapefruit. Not alot of malt to speak of... I wish the caramel scent would be more present on the palet

M: medium to light bodied, alot thinner than I was expecting... Prickly carbonation attacks my taste buds with every sip.

O: this was a good IPA but nothing special. The scent was alot more pleasant than the taste... I woulnt turn down another one of these.

dcloeren, Apr 21, 2011
Photo of wordemupg
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle poured into tulip april16 2011

A clear orange copper with decent carbonation feeding a solid two fingers of off white that retains quite well and leaves lots of scattered lace

S citric hops are very apparent, pineapple, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, lime and the list goes on in terms of tropical fruit. There's also a little spring forest both pine and just a little spruce, zero booze and just enough malty toffee to keep the hops from having complete control

T thankfully it mimics the smell quite well but with more citric rind opposed to the fruity flesh, pretty solid IPA going on here and I'm proud of the fact this is from my preferred side of the border because it could hold its own against anything from state side

M medium bodied and has a nice bitter bite without stripping the enamel off my teeth, flavors linger and the carbonation's just right

O zero flaws and close to perfection in many areas, I could drink myself stupid with this beer without thinking twice if I only had the chance here in Alberta

this really is a kick ass IPA from "our" West Coast, an IPA and 1/2 perhaps and oh so worth seeking out. An entire bomber went down in no time flat and if I had regular access to this I'd be drinking it daily. If your an agent reading this DO WHAT EVER YOU CAN TO GET THIS BEER/BREWERY IN YOUR ALBERTA PORTFOLIO, if your just a geek off the street drink this every time you get the chance. Did I mention chickenm is the man for getting this bad boy into my filthy hands?

wordemupg, Apr 17, 2011
Photo of liamt07
4.13/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle sampled at Volo, poured into a flute glass.

Poured a golden yellow, filtered with a great fluffy and sticky offwhite head. Webbed lacing and solid retention. Nose is big on the citrus hops, orange, tangerine, grapefruit, with some understated pineiness in there as well. Sits atop a solid caramel malt base. Great nose. Taste is quite bitter initially, more pine and less citrus than the nose suggested. Really wasn't expecting this given the nose, but was pleasant otherwise. Prickly carbonation, and good drinkability. A nice IPA, wish I could've had a bigger sample of this.

liamt07, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of Sammy
3.85/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours slightly cloudy grapefruit with hige white foamy head that leaves lots of spider web lacing down the glass. Wafts C-hop. Tangerine and orange citrus taste, very drinkable. Not astringent but a little numbing of the tongue. Carbonation is right there, this is a very fresh bottle. A little funky in the finish, but this makes it all the more interesting.650 ml, thanks Brian, and thanks Derek for the recommendation.

Sammy, Apr 05, 2011
Photo of chickenm
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy orange color with a huge lasting fluffy white head. Aroma is pleasant but somewhat subdued with malt and citrus hops. Taste is hoppy but balanced with pine, bready malt, and citrus. The body is a bit light but this has a really nice smooth mouthfeel. The carbonation is almost perfect. Another great beer from Driftwood!

chickenm, Mar 03, 2011
Photo of canucklehead
4.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Step up to the top of the IPA class in BC . An IPA that delivers all the hoppy goodness that we expect but with a complex piny , grapefruity finish that is backed up with tons of malt. I found it very balanced but not shy on the hops. Central City , Phillips and Tree are all available in Government stores in 6 packs making them more accessible and easier to consume but this may be my favourite BC IPA

canucklehead, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of grub
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

another bottle that Viggo brought over. thanks eric!

22oz bottle. sampled jan 9/2011.

pours nearly clear deep gold with a big dense cream coloured head. the head drops slowly and leaves plenty of lace as it falls.

aroma is great. resiny pine. grapefruit and orange. bit of tangerine. honey and caramel. bit of toffee. white bread and cracker. bit of biscuit. hint of alcohol. lightly spicy.

taste is good. just over medium bitterness level. resiny pine and grapefruit. orange. bit of tangerine. slightly powdery. light alcohol. white bread and cracker. bit of biscuit. spicy and slightly earthy hop character too, a neat blend of english and american traits.

mouthfeel is good. just over medium body, but with a nice dry finish. medium carbonation level.

drinkability is great. nice balance. good hop depth. a tasty ipa!

grub, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of LazyL
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nothing special about the colour, a very pale orange, but nice off white head that stook around for a while.
The nose has honey and grapefruit notes, subtle pine, orange maybe vanilla.
The taste is great. The label says shwack o' hops, and they are right, but at 80 IBU's they arent over the top. Creamy, well balanced, bitterness is pleasing and not overpowering.
This is a good beer. Red Racer might have just gotten a little more competition.
Driftwood is definately becoming a player. Recomended next time your craving a little hop.

LazyL, Jan 16, 2011
Photo of Rutager
4.78/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

First BA review :-)

Bomber bought from Brewery Creek. Recomended by the lovely, friendly girl behind the counter after asking about the sold out Deschutes Hop Trip which I intended to buy more of.

Appearance: After a somewhat (anxious?) agressive pour, light orange with beautiful off-white, two finger head which dissipates after a couple minutes. Nice lacing.

Smell: Piney, grapes and lemon.

Taste: Hoppy indeed!! Pine-tree sap, crisp underipe grapefruit. Slight caramel and lemon.

Mouthfeel. Oily bitterness that last just long enough. Medium carbonation. Alchohol present but very well hidden

Drinkability: Went through this too fast and wished I had another!! Looks like this will be added to the regular rotation for at least the next while.

Overall: First Driftwood product for me and not a moment too soon. Will be keeping my eye out for this bad boy of a hop fix. Looking forward to trying more from these guys!!

Rutager, Jan 08, 2011
Photo of hoser
3.8/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A low SRM and a nice spicy hop finish from Driftwood. One of BC's up and comers and I have been enjoying what they are doing so far. I never would have guessed 7% for the ABV it drinks a little lighter than that. Maybe having a DDC Chaman first wasn't the way to go in drinking beers tonight. I would have to try again to be fair to this brew. I like what this brewery is doing and hope some day we can by their products in Alberta. The hops slightly winning the battle with malt and that is not a bad thing.

hoser, Dec 19, 2010
Photo of mfaulk
3.95/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served a bit too warm - which I'd guess brought forward the malt
sweetness.

Clear gold color. Good slightly off-white head; bubbles on the coarse side.

Smell: citrus, piney, and spicy.

Taste: Hop presence is distinctly spicy, maybe grapefruit rind, or grapefruit with orange rind. Feels a bit hot for 7%.

Mouth feel: initially a little thin, but then some creamy bubbles
form. Maybe too many bubbles? Swallow leaves a back-of-the-mouth oily film.

This strikes me as pretty drinkabie for 7%, 80 IBUs. A little one-dimensional, but over all I like what they've done with the spicy hops. Its biggest flaw is mouthfeel: too light and foamy ( this might be the result of the serving temperature, but if not it would still be great with a burger and fries).

mfaulk, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of BDTyre
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Yum! A little bit more tame than Sartori, but a very powerful and hoppy IPA. Orangery-copper with a white head that is very chunky and clingy. Rich, hoppy smell. There is an initial hoppy blast followed up a sweet, bready malt. Citrusy, grassy fruit flavours. Malts are not dominant at all.

Good carbonation, very nice beer even in a 7% bomber.

BDTyre, Nov 14, 2010
Photo of Hornet2003
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber purchased from Central City liquor store. Let's see how it compares to the coveted Red Racer IPA...

Appearance: Slightly orange. Poured smoothly to nice creamy head. Dissipates over time.

Smell: Pungent hoppy aroma. Not so much grapefruity like other IPA's. Green, piney hops with some biscuity notes.

Taste: Wow this is hoppy! Lots of grassy, piney hoppiness. Very indicative of a well balanced west coast IPA. Reminds me of Phillips Hop Circle and LaConner IPA.

Mouthfeel: Fat Tug definitely is a showcase for the IBU. All 80 (according to the bottle) come through strongly and boldly. Carbonation is spot on. Slight malty sweetness contrasts beautifully with the bitterness.

Drinkability: If this were available in 6-packs, it'd be dangerous stuff. The alc/vol is high yet subtle in the taste. And the bitterness keeps it interesting.

Overall: Another GREAT beer from Driftwood and yet another sign of the amazing BC craft beer scene. Tons of hops, and different enough from Red Racer to make it stand out on it's own as one of the great West Coast IPA's.

PS. Apologies to Driftwood for the constant comparison to Central City(however it's inevitable these days with Red Racer's reputation). Driftwood is truly an innovator and leader in the BC craft beer movement. This, along with their Sartori, definitely solidifies them as one of BC's best brewers.

Hornet2003, Nov 10, 2010
Photo of WalterWalter
4.97/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I finally tried one of these today, and it is definitely my favourite IPA of all those I can remember by name, and equal to an excellent one I remember having at an American micro-brew pub (in Long Beach; Rock Bottom brewery perhaps). By far better than the IPAs from other local micro breweries which I have always found underwhelming - one is too malty, the other not carbonated enough for my liking.

The taste is very strong hops, with an amazing bitterness, and a delicious citrus-cannabis-bergamot aftertaste. No heavy malty flavours or anything to distract from this delicious hoppiness, and the hops taste fresh and, despite being very powerful, delicate. Nice carbonation; not too strong but not weak and syrupy either.

Three thumbs up.

WalterWalter, Nov 10, 2010
Photo of Derek
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The much anticipated IPA from Driftwood...

A: Clear gold with a white head, great retention and lacing.

S: Huge, perfumy aroma. Plenty of tangerine and grapefruit rind, floral, pine and a little cattiness.

T: Pine, grapefruit rind, nectarine, tangerine, assertive bitterness, candied pineapple, sponge toffee, mild alcohol, great stuff!

M: Moderate body is smooth, with a modest carbonation and a light hop acidity.

D: If you're a hop head and think 7% isn't sessionable, THINK AGAIN!

This is right up there with Red Racer... a hop lovers dream. I'm not sure if there's quite as much finishing (aroma) hops, but there's plenty of flavour and a bit more bitterness.

An all-around great brew!

Derek, Nov 09, 2010
Photo of ericj551
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I grabbed this at the local liquor store, only to realize it was just bottled today! You can't get much fresher than that, perfect for an IPA.

The beer pours an ever so slightly hazy yellowy copper with a nice foamy head that lingers. The aroma is like sticking your nose into a handful of fresh hop cones, resiny pine, citrus, pungent grassiness and bitter earthiness all meld together, with a nice background of malty sweetness. The freshness really shows, it smells like it finished dry hopping today!

Bitterness punches strongly upfront with plenty of citrus and piney hop flavor. More earthy, and harsh grassiness in the flavor. The finish is bitter and almost pungently sour. The malt is there, but it is well hidden, it only pops up here and there.

I look forward to seeing the beer on draft around Victoria, it is the most brutal IPA I've had from the Island.

ericj551, Oct 26, 2010
« first ‹ prev | 201-225 | 226-250 | 251-275  | next › last »
Fat Tug IPA from Driftwood Brewery
96 out of 100 based on 275 ratings.