Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Duckpin Pale Ale - Union Craft Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Duckpin Pale AleDuckpin Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

41 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 311
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 30.57%
Wants: 9
Gots: 63 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Union Craft Brewing Company visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: yourefragile on 07-05-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 41 | Hads: 311
Photo of jmasher85
2.47/5  rDev -36%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Clearly not my type. I won't waste words on this one, and only say that it's a bitter, hoppy pale ale in not the way that I enjoy. Little in the way of any interesting smell, and the taste is almost obnoxiously East-Coast-style hoppy - all bitter burn and not much else. Nothing offensive about it per say, and I guess if you like straightforward hoppy pale ales, go for it, but I certainly won't bother with it again.

 421 characters

Photo of MattFoley
3.12/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I needed a six pack to take tailgating and saw this was local so I picked it up. Not too impressed.

A - Clear, golden. Nothing special but nothing to really complain about either.

S - Good hoppy smell. This has me optimistic that it will be on the hoppier side of Pale Ale's, which I like.

T - Total let down. I don't know how to explain it. The hops are there but there's something else getting in the way. They taste muted, even for a pale ale.

M - Good carbonation, refreshing.

O - Unremarkable, middle of the pack. At $12 for a 6 pack of 5.5% beer, I don't see myself buying this again.

 595 characters

Photo of HopBomb515
3.24/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Light rusted orange, small white head, spotty lacing. Slight tropical fruit aroma and maybe a hint of citrus and malt but overall pretty subdued. Light tropical hop flavor but it doesn't deliver the hop punch it promises. Thin feel, prickly carbonation all the way through and a lingering bitterness. This beer didn't really hit the mark for me, it doesn't really do anything exceptional and I've had beers sub 4.5% ABV with more flavor and hop punch.

 455 characters

Photo of JLaw55
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This was so so. Tasting more malt than anything. Not only is there a lack of noticeable hops, but there is an awkward aftertaste I can't place.

Would not revisit.

 163 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.27/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the can into a nonic pint glass.

A bit lifeless looking here. Dull. Murky amber yellow and brown, with barely one finger of off white colored head presented. Manages to settle and leave a pencil thin collar and puck. Not very good looking brew.

Nose though impresses with a big 180. Lots of pineapple and fruit hop action. Clean and juicy smelling with a nice sweetness and citrus aroma. Very nice and unexpected.

Aroma doesn't quite seem to translate into an enjoyable palate. Chalky feeling palate with a dirt and earth bitterness. Faint hint of mint on the swallow on the hop realm, but this is quite watery and wet for even a pale ale. Malt depth non existent on the mid palate. Quite carbonated mouthfeel a bit and nearly seltzery.

Not sure what happened here the beer has a great bouquet too bad it just didn't translate on the palate.

 857 characters

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.28/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 oz can courtesy of mwrecording pours a hazed copper collar with a creamy cap of foam that leaves sheets of lace, pretty nice...

Nose is caramel malts and light herbal hops. Leans malty with some nutty yeast.

Taste flashes some toasted malt first and finishes bitter and leafy. Not much hop flavor and the yeast is definitely apparent. Mouthfeel is fine, though a little astringent. Just ok.

 395 characters

Photo of Biggiekrock627
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz can poured into pint glass with a pale yellow color and off white head that quickly evaporated. Heavy hop feel and taste that gets balanced by a lightly toasted cereal malty flavor.

 187 characters

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.67/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clearish amber color. The head is a finger high with a shade that's barely off-white. Not much in the way of retention - it fades to a thin film rather rapidly. At least there are some streaks of lacing left on the glass.

S: Some of the citrusy and even tropical fruit hops come out pretty well - it's not an explosive hop aroma, but it's a good one. Also piny in spurts. Like most pale ales, malts appear with notes of caramel and even some sugary wisps.

T: This is a decent mix of tropical/herbaceous/piny hops (I'm even getting those high falutin' Galaxy hops, which I love) and candy-like malts. Hops on the front end, malts near the finish. I wish the tropical notes were more vivid - they're kind of getting lost within the more generic grapefruit and caramel tones. Still, this is a very good pale ale that I'm not getting tired of drinking (if I ever get tired of drinking a single pale ale, then we have serious problems!)

M: A gentle lingering sweetness helps make this crisp, clean brew quite refreshing. Honestly, it starts to linger a bit strongly after a while. Take that out of the equation and the feel is very nice: carbonation is just right, fullness of the body is just right, and the finishing dryness is just right.

O: My buddy Nick swears by this beer as "his Bud Light". I know for a fact I'd much rather drink this over Bud Light (other things I'd rather be doing than drinking Bud Light also include stapling my ear to a wall, taking a kick to the groin, and bathing in cement). Still, this is a very good and very quaffable local pale ale - and as we all know, local equals good, except when it's not. As I continue to drink it, it just seems to get better and better; hell, I'm just done finishing my second can in this session.

 1,801 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

They're pulling that old homebrew trick- the one where you make an IPA but you enter it into an American Pale Ale competition catagory, because you know that the IPA is more flavorful and seductive that Pale Ale, so you know you'll win, right? But Union Craft Brewing is actually on the right track. Where that might not go over on the homebrew circuit, our palates are trending hoppier and hoppier. So the more that you make you Pale Ale taste like IPA the more fanfare they'll likely receive. After all, consumers are not judges.

Regardless, the "Pale Ale" kicks off with a deep goldenrod hue that approaches light amber through its center. A mid-statured column of foam builds upon the beer and easily lasts the session even after receding to a sheet across the glass. Lacing with ladder-like patterns- there's nothing to the beer's appearance that suggests anything other than a well built Pale Ale.

And then the nose reaches the rim and everything changes. The citrus mounts, and mounts, and mounts- grapefruit everywhere, orange peels everywhere, grass and pine everywhere. So where's the malt balance? Its props up the hops with notions of graham cracker, caramel and light biscuit. Light stems, leaves and bark-like scents are perfumy yet piquant and seems a little lemony, tea-like, kinda like sassafras.

Similarly in taste, the malt focus is early and short- caramel and toasted grain gives a hearty sweetness. That is, until the hops rise in the middle. The sharp and tangy taste of white grapefruit, unripened oranges and lime peels goes all bitter in a hurry- ushering in a fast finish with a stemmy, dry resin, and acutely bitter finish. Its vegetative taste is just as characterful as its smooth bitterness as the hops trail in memory.

Even its malty-dry texture is more testament to India Pale versions that that of the maltier American Pales. Its creamy carbonation separates early and leads to a resinous-dry finish, but first it leaves a watery draw between. Mostly clean, crisp and refreshing; the ale pierces the gullet with glimpses of hop-derived astringency and assertive bite.

Duckpin Pale Ale is a rewarding taste for those who prefer the taste and balance of American IPA but with the body and semi-sessionability of standard Pale. Its light body exposes some earthy qualities, however I tend to celebrate such rustic and raw qualities.

 2,368 characters

Photo of GOBLIN
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A well put together pale ale. These days everybody is over hopping everything and barrel aging the rest . . . A solid brew here and a style probably needs more attention.

 170 characters

Photo of BuccoFan
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I had the Double Duckpin this past weekend and enjoyed it so much that I went out and bought some other Union beer.

Their Pale has a decent look to it, but is a little light looking. Aroma is very good, with nice floral and malt scents. Body and lacing are good as well. My only issue is that the finish is a little tangy for my tastes. It didn't quite finish very smoothly. Still a good beer, though.

 403 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Received this beer in a great trade with DeutschesBier.. Thanks a bunch Clint!! Glad we crossed paths!!

Pours fairly clear straw golden ... short lived white head leaves pretty good lacing.

Big citrus for a standard pale ale with a lightly balanced pale malt presence... Smells great.

Flavor mirrors the nose with an extremely drinkable well balanced pale ale... nice citrus and perfect bitterness.

Body is a good light/medium... carbonation is light/medium... very quaffable.


Thanks again to Clint for a great trade!!

 548 characters

Photo of dbl_delta
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Undated can into pint glass. Hazy, deep gold with a thin tan head. Moderate carbonation. Medium mouthfeel, probably about right for an IPA. Hoppy/bitter, but not what I'd call an interesting flavor profile - kind of one-dimensional. Not bad, but not anywhere near outstanding.

 281 characters

Photo of Griffin2
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a 14 ounce cup.
Pours a dark orange color with a medium white head.
This is a very nice piney pale ale. Perfect for an outdoor summer afternoon.

 156 characters

Photo of HeartofMiami
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Thanks to a buddy who picked it up fresh from Baltimore. Can into snifter. Look and smell of a good IPA. Dank, grass, citrus. Nice carbonation. Taste is flat, falls off. Very little flavor. A hint of lime, grass. Caramel finish. Glad I got to try but not my favorite.

 276 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Can. Orange body with hints of amber and a half inch of head. Citrusy aroma with a touch of grass. Mild earthy character with cracker & biscuit malt notes. Fairly balanced, in favor of hops. Juicy and relatively light in body with zesty carbonation. Decent.

 257 characters

Photo of bluehende
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I really like this one. Hoppier than most pales and borders on a low alcohol IPA. If they marketed this as a session IPA they would be closer to the truth. I thoroughly enjoyed this.

 185 characters

Photo of Florida9
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Clear golden in color. Forms a minimal white head. Decent retention. Minimal lacing.

S: Pleasant aroma. Very hop forward, but still restrained. Mostly citrus: grapefruit and orange with some light pine notes to round things out.

T: Taste is similar, but not as well developed in the hop department. Grainy malts with just a touch of caramel. Grapefruit and grapefruit pith. Some mild pine and. There is also a bit of a tropical fruit sweetness to the beer.

M: On the lighter side of medium. Appropriate carbonation. Medium bitterness. Slightly grainy mouthfeel.

O: A very respectable APA. Easily drinkable and at 5.5% its a sessionable beer as well.

 660 characters

Photo of John_M
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Hudson St. Stackhouse today.

The beer pours a slightly hazy, peachy amber color with good head retention and lacing. The beer certainly looks attractive enough. I don't pick up a whole lot in the nose... just some sweet malt and some light, underlying dry citrus. The beer smells as if it might be on the malty/sweet side. On the palate, the beer is much better, as there's a nice dollop of perfumy, hoppy bitterness to buoy the malty sweetness. The flavor profile is pretty interesting, as initially the beer seems fairly malty/sweet, but then the hoppy bitterness comes on strong, leading to a dry, bitter finish. It gives the beer something of a layered flavor profile (not a bad thing). Mouthfeel is medium bodied at most, but with a long, hoppy bitter, slightly spicey finish. Alcohol is no more than an after thought in this well crafted pale ale.

This is really quite tasty. Well done!

 904 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a clearish golden body with two finger head that died quick with minor lace. Soft, balanced aroma of both citric hops and some fruit and malt sweetness, although not as much caramel malt as a tropical fruit essence. Beer is light and smooth, but not watery, and the hops are evident and provide a crisp finish but I really enjoy the sweetness in this beer (again, something like tropical fruits). A simple but real enjoyable beer.

 437 characters

Photo of NiceTaps
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap in a pint glass.

A-Good looking golden-orange color, slightly hazy. The 2-finger head just won't quit and leaves thick lacing.

S- Pale malts, breads, and more malts, kinda heavy.

T- A true pale malt flavor down to the bone.

M- Well carbonated and chewy for solid body and feel. Malty dry from start to finish, not a hint of hoppiness.

O- I can't find the hops advertised in this brew as you can tell by my comments above, but it holds up and isn't bad.

 465 characters

Photo of reebtaerG
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Had on cask at Lures

A-Clear, medium amber with an off-white head and excellent lacing.

S-Hoppy aroma of pineapple, fruity hops and caramel.

T-Taste of fruity hops, pineapple, citrus, caramel, tropical fruit more hops.

M-Nice mouthfeel with medium body and medium/high carbonation.

O-This was my first time having Union. Nice job, curious how the others are?

 367 characters

Photo of cyclonece09
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz can into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours a light orange with a small head that dissipates quickly. Smells of piney and floral hops, very nice. Tastes of earthy hops with very slight barley and citrus undertones, very well balanced, very nice hop bite. Beer is light body, nice clean finish, no weird aftertastes, carbonated heavily. Overall, a very good beer.

 375 characters

Photo of cambabeer
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up never having heard of it while in DC. Was pleasantly surprised with the more complex flavor profile than I expected. Drinks more like a heaver IPA than one would expect with this ABV. Nice citrus flavors and hop aromas, nice bitter aftertaste all on a solid malt backbone. Would buy again.

 306 characters

Photo of Jawn-Doe
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful golden amber with a thin, creamy cap. Nice lacing. Light caramel and toffee on the nose. Creamy texture and sweet malt up front, light citrus and pine slowly comes in. Prickly, dry finish. There's a really nice balance here. It's really the best of both worlds-seamlessly mixing sweet, caramel malt with biting, grassy hops.

 340 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Duckpin Pale Ale from Union Craft Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.