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Drake's Blonde Ale - Drake's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Drake's Blonde AleDrake's Blonde Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

54 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 54
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.55
pDev: 10.14%
Wants: 4
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerManDan on 02-18-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 54 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

t0rin0, Nov 19, 2012
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.63/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap for the 2014 Los Angeles Vegan Beer Festival held in West Hollywood, CA.

Pours a hazy light yellow with a foamy off-white head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Foamy patches of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, and grass aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet grain and grass flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty, but has a much better smell in my opinion.

UCLABrewN84, May 18, 2014
Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

zestar, Aug 06, 2014
Photo of Texasfan549
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

Texasfan549, Feb 16, 2014
Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Blue Palms for Drakes/Triple Rock Tap Takeover

A: The pour is a clear, pale golden straw color with a fluffy white head.

S: Sort of your generic "blonde" ale aroma here. Corn and pale malts with a touch of cracker malt. Definitely some yeast and a light amount of fruity esters. Some floral hops are also present.

T: The flavor follows the same pattern. Pale malts and corn give the beer a substantial sweetness which is partially offset by some lightly bitter and floral hops. Fruity esters are also present on the palate.

M: Light to medium in body with a moderate level of carbonation.

O: Decent enough for a blonde/kolsch.

womencantsail, May 08, 2011
Photo of largadeer
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

largadeer, May 08, 2013
Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Drake's Barrel House, review from written notes.

Bright straw gold, completely transparent with stray trails of rising carbonation.

Aroma of crackers, shortbread, and trace white grapes from the Kölsch yeast.

Crisp and snappy, sliced apple flavors and firm noble hop bitterness. Very light and refreshing, with an ethereal dry finish. Quintessential summer session beer, 2-3 pints would be no problem with this beer. Simplicity is underrated.

emerge077, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of mactrail
3.4/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light golden in the big nonic glass. There should be a category for Malt Liquor Honey Blonde. A light perfumey flavor, which I guess is supposed to be the Kölsch style. Modest bitterness with just a touch of flowery hops. Very light body. More of a tangy lager, which I guess is the point of this style. Where is all this honey coming from?

On tap at Tiger Tiger in San Diego. Not quite quite a classic Kölsch, but an interesting and pleasant quaff.

mactrail, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.65/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy bright yellow colour, wioth a frothy and fizzling head of white, initially, that dissipates quickly, leaving only a ring of bubbly mess around the edge of the glass. elatively fluid body, with a little weight behind it, and fine residual carbonation. Not bad.

Nose is crisp and slightly grainy, with a slightly green European hop character that reminds me of a Czech pilsener, as well as, truly a Kölsch. It's a bit mild and flat, but it's crisp and light as well. Not bad, again.

Taste is light with a mild fresh bitterness through the centre of the palate, and a crisp dry finish, giving off a little floury grain and a touch of light yeast. Feel is sparkling by the end, but surprisingly flat throughout the rest of the palate.

It's a very crisp, light and drinkable beer. No, it doesn't do anything extraordinary, but some days you just want a light, bright and quenching brew. This would be a cracker for such occasions.

lacqueredmouse, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.03/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a pale golden color with a small white head. Nose is light with a dash of hops and a little citrusy. Taste is thin, crisp, citrusy and some straw, grain and honey maybe. Mouthfeel is ok, lightness leaves drinkability good but not the best of this brew type. Worth a try

barleywinefiend, Jan 16, 2009
Photo of DoubleJ
3.68/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of a mix-pack from Cost Plus Market, on to the beer:

Poured into a pint glass, this beer is chill-hazed peach color. The head retnetion is good.The aroma is mildly phenolic (plastic)with some peach and apricot crawling up. The taste is light on the palate with a high carbonation, but not over the top. Soft flavors of apricot and touch-ups of by-products off what one could find in a Belgian pale ale, the letter which I found to be very interesting. An easy drinker with a light bitterness in the aftertaste, this beer was enjoyed with a grilled chicken dinner.

DoubleJ, Jun 19, 2008
Photo of biegaman
3.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at 21st Amendment, in San Francisco.

Many people don't realize it, but "lagers" take their name from the process of "lagering", wherein a beer is left to settle at really cold temperatures over an extended period of time. This makes for a 'cleaner' brew, figuratively in the flavour sense but quite literally in terms of appearance: this golden beer is not only brilliantly shiny, but spotlessly clear too.

It's unusual for these kinds of lagers to have aromatics much worth mentioning and Drake's Blonde Ale is no exception. What's there is certainly pleasant, however, and gives us a nice sneak peek to the strongly bready malts and subtle, but stern, hops that are to ensue. In any case, I didn't order the pint to sit and smell it all night anyhow.

Me personally, although I think this is true of most beer geeks too, I don't dislike pale, light lagers at all. In fact, I'm rather fond of them - provided they're done right. The problem is most are made with huge proportions of adjuncts, usually rice or corn. Not only do these thin the beer out, but they leave an awful taste and often introduce a nasty amount sweetness.

What set's a Kölsch apart from everyday American lagers is that it not only has an unadulterated maltiness but, equally important, an undiluted one too. This example not only tastes like a freshly baked batch of bread - and not a synthetic, syrupy vat or corn - but it's also firm enough you could iron shirt over it. And heavy enough to be able to fill your belly up.

The middling scores most people have given the beer do not fairly reflect its quality; more likely they are a statement of the fact that many reviewers under-appreciate this clean and approachable German lager style. While Kölsch beer may fit most's description of an 'average' beer, I contend that Drake's Blonde Ale is a definitely an above-average example of one.

biegaman, Jul 09, 2011
Photo of GraduatedCashew
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

GraduatedCashew, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of wethorseblanket
3.55/5  rDev 0%

wethorseblanket, Oct 27, 2014
Photo of illidurit
3.58/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Parish Publick House in Santa Cruz. Poured into a pint glass. Shimmering gold color with a thin wispy white head. Aroma is noble hops and pilsener maltiness. Flavor is grainy pale and pilsener malts with a lemony and grassy noble hop tinge. Mildly sweet and earthy. Body isn't thick by any means but it's a touch too full for the style. Nonetheless this beer is pretty refreshing without tasting like water.

illidurit, Apr 02, 2009
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 ounce bottle sealed with a very colorful and nicely decorated crown cap. Simple brown glass bottle is covered in one of those plastic shields where the see through parts lend the impression that the bottle has separate front, back and neck labels, when in fact it does not. Standard “Drake’s” 12oz design is differentiated only with the words “Blonde Ale” against a brown background. Described as a Kölsch style ale and listed at 4.8% Alc/Vol.

Appearance: Light but shining Golden body, clean presentation with a fascinating almost glowing body. Massive white head on the pour forms a gargantuan cap, rugged and irregular with an appealing Teutonic aspect. Super fine cascading conditioning milks the body on the pour, but soon rises to quickly support the thick cap. Lovely smattered lacing once the deep head collapses, head retention is excellent and the looks are impressive.

Nose: Soft and gentle with a Pilsner like quality to it. Delicate hopping is crisp and refreshing. Light in strength but very nice nonetheless.

Taste: Effervescent start, the conditioning lightens the entrance. Malts start with a gentle lemon hop tickle in the center. Straw-like feel with fresh herb and spices supporting the hop character. Finish is clean and unfettered.

Mouthfeel: The body is light in nature but the depth of flavors and the gorgeously smooth conditioning make for a brew that feels much bigger than its initial impression suggests.

Drinkability: I snaffled a Six-Pack of the Blonde Ale during a recent trip to BevMo and I’m finding that I am pouring top-ups from the next bottle in my fridge rather than the one I started with, I’m well into the second bottle and a third will follow soon no doubt.

Overall: I’ve had some good brews from Drake’s recently, and this one is no exception either. Funny how I did not have much expectation from this, yet as it turned out it was a very nice surprise. Don’t let the “Blonde” moniker put you off, this is far from dumb. Subtle, but definitely not boring.

TheLongBeachBum, Mar 19, 2006
Photo of cpetrone84
3.65/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Kevin for sharing this one!

A-pours a clear golden color with a thin bubbly white head.

S-the nose is rather grainy, hints of slight toasted bread, plenty of lemon, lots of white peppery spice, slightly herbal hop presence.

T-the flavor is similar, hints of toasted bread and a fair bit of grain, sweet lemon but slightly tart, lots of peppery spice in the back to balance.

M-medium body and very creamy and slightly syrupy. low carbonation lacking the crisp finish i wanted to see. still a soft feel and rather thick.

D-this is an easy drink and well balanced with sweetness and peppery spice. the flavors are very blonde ale style. the feel is off for the style with low carbonation and thick creamy texture.

cpetrone84, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of CheapBeerBuzz
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

CheapBeerBuzz, Jan 01, 2013
Photo of hopdog
3.43/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle acquired in trade with DarkElf (thanks!).

Poured a lighter and slightly hazy, golden color with a smaller sized white head. Sweet and fruity aromas and tastes with some citrus. Starts of sweet and ends in a spicy and somewhat bitter finish.

Notes from 6/2/05

hopdog, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of bumchilly25
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

bumchilly25, Mar 22, 2013
Photo of brotherloco
2.5/5  rDev -29.6%

brotherloco, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of Wowcoolman
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Wowcoolman, May 10, 2014
Photo of soju6
3.48/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden color with a decent head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Aroma of fresh grain with mild hops and bit of malt sweetness.

T: Taste starts with a nice crispness the a bit of malt sweetness. Nice bitterness to a clean finish.

F: Light body, crisp and refreshing. Nice clean feel.

O: Nothing fancy, just a good summer beer that goes down easy.

soju6, Jul 17, 2012
Photo of SoCalBeerIdiot
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

SoCalBeerIdiot, Sep 09, 2013
Photo of aracauna
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is surprisingly good, actually. Pours a full, but pale gold that catches the light and seems to glow on its own almost. The head is bright white and lingers. The aroma is light, mostly light noble hops. The flavor is bright and crisp, citrusy and straw malt flavors. The hops are very reminiscent of pilsner hops, as is the malt profile. This is light and chuggable but avoids being bland. The quintessential summer beer.

aracauna, Jan 14, 2004
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Drake's Blonde Ale from Drake's Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.