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Drake's IPA - Drake's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Drake's IPADrake's IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

212 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 212
Hads: 500
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 15.56%
Wants: 24
Gots: 54 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: drewbage on 06-09-2003

"Drake's flagship beer! A "West Coast" interpretation of an India Pale Ale. Copper-colored from additions of light Crystal malt, and body-building Caramalt, carry the malt weight of this hop bomb. The hoppy aromas of pine and grapefruit are delivered from the abundant Columbus and Cascade hops."
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 212 | Hads: 500
Photo of drpimento
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Seems to be an American IPA with some Brit accents. Appearance is good with a very long lasting, cream-colored head, some lace, and a clear amber color. Aroma is mostly caramel malt with bit of hop. Flavor is strongly hop bitter, carbonic tang up front, malt sweet in back with a very long hop bitter resin finish. Palate is good.Good drinking beer.

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Photo of Maudite
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a damn fine beer. Especially to drink while shopping for homebrew supplies at Oakbarrel Winecraft in Berkeley, CA.

A- Beautiful golden orange; the color of a southwest sunset. A nice head, despite being in a plastic punch cup. Didn't last for too long, though a small halo stayed with me to the last. White, minimal lacing.

S- Right off the bat I got grapefruit. A small amount of pine, maybe a bit sappy/woodsy, lent from the hops. Smelled rather dense, like fresh cut timber, or an old growth forest, with definite citrus notes, to boot. Nothing beyond the wonderfully balanced hops.

T- Grapefruit, bitter citrus peel, a slight oakishness. Deliciously bitter on the tongue, wonderful hop-bite. Pale and crisp, small, small amount of burnt caramel, honey, very buried.

M- Tart, astringent, biting, tight. Really got in there and washed my mouth clean like a dry gin.

D- Maybe not a session beer, but then again, maybe? Very well balanced, very clean and refreshing; great body on this gal.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is a mix of pine and orange hops, along with a lot of resiny notes. The flavor is a little different but still very nice. I get a lot of bitter papaya and oranges with some pine and bready malt mixed in. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice American IPA.

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Photo of magictrokini
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A superb IPA. Pours a hazy orange with a decent off-white head. Aroma is hoppy, but with lots of malt and resin. The taste is outstanding. Perfectly balanced hop bitterness with the carmel malt, but a crisp finish. No stickiness at all. It was worth the wait.

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Photo of number1bum
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from mymrnngjkt. Thanks Kevin.

Pours an orange amber color, pretty good clarity and a bit more than a finger of light cream head. Head retention is quite good and leaves a ton of stick.

Smells of citrus and pine hops and a good dose of caramel malt. Hmmm...this baby is smelling like an American IPA.

Taste says American IPA, too, as it's big on citrus and piney hops with ample bitterness. Really solid caramel malt backbone gives great balance. Slight buttery/toffee flavor, too, as well as some toasted malt. Great balance here and lots of hop flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, pretty slick on the palate.

This is a pretty darn good IPA. Seems a lot more American IPA than English to me, but whatever. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of aforbes10
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sixer from the Davis Co-Op. Pours a medium brown with a short white head and sticky white lacing. Smells of green grass and pine, as well as sweet caramel malt. Flavor is hoppy and bitter, but not too much of either. Some pine flavors accent the bitterness and it all rides smoothly on a big malt base. Some minty and vague ctirus notes. Big and strong for the style, but it holds up well. A fine drinker, I had no problem polishing off the six pack and I may go back for more.

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Photo of mjl21
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. No bottling info is given. Comes in at 7%.

A-Pours a very clear amber with a one finger head that turns rather quickly into a few foamy clouds. A decent foamy ring encircles the glass. Nice streaks of lace cling to the glass.

S-A mix of floral and citrus hops, but not in your face.

T-When it firsts hits, citrus hops do a nice job hitting the palate, followed by a really nice caramel malt backbone that once again gives way to a nice citrus finish that leaves a pleasant lingering bitterness.

M-It is a very crisp IPA with nice carbonation and medium bodied.

D-Goes down very easily. The progression from hop bite to good malt backbone to more hopss gives this beer a nice balance. It is bitter, but not overly bitter.

Yet another great IPA. After having a bottle I realized I need to revisit this one more often. I normally only have a glass of this if Drake's is at a random brewfest.

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Photo of bennetj17
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to fartingdog for this bottle, an extra in our recent trade. Dropped off on my doorstep this morning, in my belly this evening.

The appearance is quite dark, a deep amber, like a plum. The head is a nice 1/2 inch to begin with before it settles to a coating foam. Pleasant aroma of piney hops dominates, and they are very sweet and citrusy. I took in several whiffs. The tangy citrus hops come through strongly in the flavor, with a note of caramel too from the malt. Slightly dry, the tangy bitterness in the finish intensifies with each sip. Medium bodied, with a great smoothness. The carbonation creates a light foaminess helping to coat the palate.

I'm not as familiar with English IPA's as I am American ones, but after drinking this I didn't see much difference, probably because this English example was made in California. Either way, it was quite tasty, with plenty of hop flavor for my enjoyment. Highly quaffable...

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Photo of climax
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one started off wonderfully. The bright citrus aromas hit the nose right when the cap was popped (to be emphasized in a second). The beer poured a luminous natural orange with a nice hoppy haze. The head was tall and lumpy, retention and lace abound.

The prominent citrus aroma was accented by earthy pine. The malt backbone was no wallflower here. Dark roasted chocolate and graham cracker added another dimension, amping up the often too typical excursively caramel nose.

For those who frown upon malt balance in an IPA, have no fear... the taste is a hop circus with malt playing usher. Very resinous pine makes it's presence known from start through the long bitter finish. Citrus in the form of tropical fruit and grapefruit towards the end keep things juicy.

The body was nice and thick, very viscous and sticky. Nice to have an IPA with this much mouth presence to change things up a bit. You may not be able to drink it down as fast and proceed to another.... but with a 7% ABV, go ahead and savor it. Great beer.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Goofy plastic label on the glass bottle touts the GABF golg medal.

Pours with a hazy ochre orange topped with a spotty thick beige head cap leaving decent lace in the glass.

Scents are big with a blanace of grainy hops and thick orange peel and lemon citrus.

First swigs: Solig grainy malt balances the orange peel and citrus blend. Some dusty bitterness and tea like astringency.

crisp feel with a dry bitter finish. This is a mouth parcher.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow...this is dark for an IPA...dark orange...almost like an Irish Red.
Aroma is definately IPA hops....clean citrus and very heavy pine...very pleasant and fresh.
Taste is sweet malt followed immediately by citrus hops then the evergreen....surprisingly fresh.
Finishes dry and citrus in the mouth.
Mouthfeel is maybe a little thin for type, but not much...nice carbonation but the bitterness thins out the feel rather than coating your tongue with resin and oils.
All in all a remarkable IPA ....very distinctive for me due to the strong evergreen/pine aroma and taste. Refreshing.
Could probably session this but at 7% don't want to try that tonight.

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Photo of rayjay
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Okay my scores have been high so far but I guess I've been reviewing some of my favorite beers.

Reddish pale, a deep amber. Not a huge head but nicely carbonated. Smells and tastes very floral, like chewing on fresh cascades. Pine and bitter grapefruit, with a fresh floral aftertaste.

This is one of those beers that gives me a very slight "hop-headache;" hard to describe, but there is so much hop juice that it's almost too much, but too much is never enough (sorry that's the best I can describe it...anyone else???) Some cask ales that are dry-hopped do a similar thing to me.

Malts are perfect: just a little bit of carmels, in the perfect ratio with the hops, lots of fresh flowers shining through. The light carbonation plays well with the hops. A great blend of hop flavors, whichever ones they used. Great tasting hop burps.

One of the best beers for the money. This is an excellent IPA, British in style but West Coast extreme. Would make a great session ale dispite the 7% abv. Cheers!

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into my Duvel tulip

A: Deep orange with a off-white head that recedes slowly leaving lace and a frothy ring. Appealing

S: Fruity hops with pine, pineapple and maybe apricots? There's a lovely caramel malt backbone to this. Not massively hoppy but great for the style

T: Nice biting bitterness up front followed by a mild pine flavor. There's a mild caramel sweetness to this with a mild peach and fig flavor but this one stays clean and dry. Good stuff.

M: Good carbonation, dry and bitter finish, this is a winner

D: This is one I'm glad i got to try. In fact, I'm glad I have another to drink!

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Photo of Viggo
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

About time I got around to drinking this one! Courtesy of fartingdog from BC2! Shared with grub.

Pours a hazed orange, thick off white head forms, settles down to a decent ring, nice lacing. Smell is intense, floral, very tropical, lots of grapefruit and pineapple, caramel, oranges, bread, pretty solid malt base, nice hops, very balanced. Taste is sweet, grains and caramel, grapefruit, oranges, pineapple, toast, flora, spicy bitter finish. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation, bit of warmth, very smooth and highly drinkable. Next time I need to try this fresh! Still excellent even past its prime. Thanks Dave!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in a rare single 12oz bottle from Bevmo in Sunnyvale, CA.

Pours a deep burnished coppery golden colour with a frothy and thick head of beaten egg-white. Lacing is thick and raucous. Body looks quite light and a little flat, but otherwise, it's a great looking beer.

Nose is fresh, bright and comfortable, with a really big sweet tropical fruit and mellow citrus character caressing the olfactory passages. Smooth and mellow and really nicely integrated, it's west coast hops at their most chillaxed and well-balanced. Lovely.

Taste is a little simpler, with a light body guiding the straight vector of hops through the centre of the palate until they dip and dance with the malt into a carob and pine-needle fresh finish. Very clean and bright on the palate, with a remarkably light and drinkable character for the ABV.

Lovely brew, and a refreshingly sessionable IPA. I love breweries that do extreme, exciting beers, but it's almost better when a brewery puts together a characterful, but utterly sessionable and drinkable brew. Drake's have done that with this beer.

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Photo of raynmoon
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've completely overlooked this brewery and am glad I gave this one a try. After having a Hop Ottin from Anderson Valley, this one blows it away.

It has an almost perfect balance between bitterness and flavor. Every few sips you get a touch of alcohol, but that is just an imperfection. Still lots of flavor. Nothing unique, but keeps wanting to go back for me.

Love the mouthfeel.

Awesome beer. A little less full bodied than what would be desired, but still very overlooked. Deserves a better score.

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Photo of veinless
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful golden orange with some slightly off-white foamy head on top that has a cake-like appearance. Retains decently, and leaves spotty lace.

Aroma is of grapefruit, mango and pineapple. Orange is the strongest, and really reminds me of fresh mandarins (which I happen to have in the fridge). Caramel and sticky fruit sweetness take a backseat, but themselves heard. Smells intoxicating and delicious.

Tastes great, as pine gets thrown into the mix in a big way and adds a lot to the beer. First tastes are of tropical fruit and pine; once the pine fades a bit the fruit remains, and complements the caramel malt pretty well. Lots of orange and grapefruit citrus come to play and leave a nice tangy taste in the mouth. Finish is piny and dry, although it does leave a bit of sweet malt in its wake. Bitterness comes out the most in the aftertaste as well, something I personally find nice, but others may not.

Mouthfeel is solid, as the beer is very full bodied, sticky at times, and never lacking weight. Can even get a crisp sort of creamy (the kind of creamy which is refreshing) which is nice. Drinkability is hindered a bit by the strong aftertastes, but I personally find this beer to be quite easy to drink. The abv of 7% is nothing crazy, so a couple of these would go down no problem for most. This is an IPA done right, and I can see myself picking up a sixer of this in the future.

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Photo of marc77
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Auburn hue, with good clarity save a trace haze. Notions of pine needle and candied lemon zest dominate the aroma. Secondary hints of medium lovibond caramel. Clean and enticing aromawise. Upfront in flavor is a malt driven combination of biscuit and light toffee, followed by a brusque note of piney hop. Hop bitterness is mollified by the supple, but simple malt backbone, and thus bitterness seems subdued for a west coast IPA. Mid palate pine diminishes and clement tangerine hints arise welcomely. Medium bodied, with a soft, nearly creamy mouthfeel from the combination of ample dextrins and lighter than average carbonation. Finishes with a snap of wort - like sweetness yielding to fleeting notes of pleasantly bitter citrus rind. An excellent, well - rounded IPA with a pleasant malt profile. Superbly drinkable as a result.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with fartingdog. Thanks for the opportunity... 06 version.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1 1/4" light tan head over the slightly cloudy orangey amber brew. Head isn't going anywhere fast, and lacing is heavy and frothy. Aroma is deeply of sweet piney hops. Flavor is light maltiness upfront, with lots of pine hops flavor that dominates and lingers long and hard. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both quite good, I could make this a regular IPA if it wasn't only found on the opposite shores. Will have to get it when I can, and you should too.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The pour is a cloudy burnt orange color with a rather fluffy white head on top and lacing all the way down the glass.

S: The nose is very pleasantly citrusy, giving off lots of grapefruit and orange aromas. There's a bit of caramel sweetness and a touch of pine.

T: The flavor is much more bitter than the nose would lead you to believe. A nice blast of bitter grapefruit and pine up front which carries all the way through the sip. There's just a hint of orange which gives the beer a bit of sweetness.

M: The body is light-to-medium with a crisp carbonation and a nice bitter finish.

D: This is an incredibly drinkable and delicious IPA. A nice one to sip on or to relax and cool off during the warm weather.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-oz. bottle into a pint glass. Color was honey caramel. Tons of head, which I don’t think I can say is a bad pour. This is the second Drake I’ve had in two days where I opened a regular bottle and the foam just started coming out. Anyway, probably four fingers of head. Thick frothy lacing on the top. Some film on the sides, still along the lines of the lacing - frothy and cloudy.

Smelled more like a pale ale than an IPA. Once again it reminded me of Drake’s 1500 pale ale. Got some citrus notes and some sweetness.

On the taste, once again I’m back to the Drake’s 1500 pale ale. It tastes very similar, just a bit stronger. This is so smooth. Slightly bitter finish, but still good. Some caramel notes and some sweet notes.

Medium body. Creamy texture. Lively (above average) carbonation. Long finish.

Just a good beer. Smooth and consistent.

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Photo of jhammerly
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to IntriqKen for the trade.

This beer poured a rich, dark amber body with a huge, frothy head that left rings of lace as it slowly settled down. Nice retention. Floral hops came to the nose, very inviting and not too strong. Very bitter with the taste of grapefruit present. Medium-bodied and very drinkable. This was a nice style. It reminded me of an English IPA, but had the feel of an American IPA.

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Photo of LBBeer
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a-straw-copper color and great lacing

s-big green hoppy nose, very fresh

t-bitter, bitter, bitter just how I like it!

m-starts out thick on the pallette, but finishes a bit thin

d-pretty heavy, buy smooth enough to have 2 (or 3)

Another great offering from one of my favorite west coast brewers,

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Photo of bcm119
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep amber with a long lasting white froth.

Soft cookie-like malt aroma balanced by piney hops. Fairly chewy malt backbone with plenty of bittering hops; finishing hops are more pine and herbs than grapefruit. Normally I'd think this is too malty for an IPA, but the yeast they use seems to downplay any fruitiness in the malt and this ends up being a beautifully balanced IPA. The bready malt doesn't get in the way of the complex hop bill in this one. It does have some English qualities but the hops are all west coast. On cask, this is a deeply complex, malty IPA.

One of my top 3 local favorite IPAs, behind Moonlight and Racer 5.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid IPA from an oft overlooked company producing some very nice beers. Pours an orange amber with quite a thick head to start, and some okay lacing. Smells a bit bready, and even a tad sweet, but there is a nice undercurrent of citrusy hops. The taste is really quite nice. Nice jolt of bitterness that is sustained throughout with grapefruit rind and pine notes. The pine becomes especially dominant on the finish. These flavors are married to a slightly sweet, pleasant breadiness at the start that lends some slight cherry fruit to the equation as well. By the finish, though, this has become a bracing hit of pine. Very nice. Mouthfeel is relatively thick for an IPA, especially many West Coast ones. This is certainly not a San Diego IPA as far as body goes, probably more akin to Lagunitas, with a bit more breadiness. Delicious, and quite obtainable in the Bay Area by the sixpack.

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Drake's IPA from Drake's Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 212 ratings.