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Expedition Ale - Drake's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Expedition AleExpedition Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

87 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 87
Reviews: 69
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 16
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mark on 04-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 69 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Furball
2.28/5  rDev -42.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I've had good luck with most of Drakes brews, but this one was not one of those.

The appearance is typical, a darker amber. It seems to have a tendency to pour with a really thick head that is neither sweet or flavorful in any manor. The clarity is minimal.

The smell has to be one of the most offensive elements of this beer, as it is sour and almost a mold-like, organic smell, but really not in a good way.

On first taste, this beer is bitter, sour, and just plain foul. I actually have a very hard time drinking this. I find it so sour that I really can't taste much else in the brew. As for the mouth feel, just imagine all the moisture being drawn out of your mouth. It's drying and thin.

It kind of bothers me to review this beer so poorly as I really like Drakes in general. We've had this on the keg several times and just finished one right now, and I can promise that I won't be getting this brew again.

Furball, Nov 18, 2004
Photo of jmechy
3/5  rDev -24.2%

jmechy, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of jenray
3/5  rDev -24.2%

jenray, Nov 23, 2011
Photo of mactrail
3.13/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

White foam and a load of lacing on this mahogany amber brew. A damp basement smell mars the first sips. Acidity slides off into a hint of sourness. After the brief malty flirtation it leaves you with a dirty bitterness that goes on and on. Murky, sharp, a hint of burnt fat.

I just don't get this over-hopped big red style. Start with a wet cardboard malt base and dose it with too much earthy hops? I know they can make great beers like the Aroma Coma, so this flat, harsh taste is a surprise. In the 22 oz bomber.

mactrail, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of himynameisping
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

himynameisping, Nov 28, 2013
Photo of BeerTruck
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

BeerTruck, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

t0rin0, Sep 22, 2012
Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired from fartingdog courtesy of Birthday Club 2, so a big "Thank you" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark copper color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is full of caramelized malt and hops along with some spice & citrus in the background.

T: The taste is malty and smoky with a strong hops bitterness that prevails as the most dominant flavor. There are minor but complimentary flavors of caramel, nuts & citrus as well. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, it's a good beer and is one worth drinking for a while but to me it just seems kind of ordinary. Therefore, if it were available around here, it would probably be a beer that I would routinely pass on.

TheManiacalOne, Sep 23, 2007
Photo of joepais
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass produced a finger worth of head that settled to a thick lace on top of a cloudy brown body

Aromas of sweet malts and spice with a light floral hop note at the end

Flavors of toasted malts with a strong bitter not all of it is from the hops

Good mouthfeel medium with enough carbonation to keep it crisp on the tongue

A good ale more of a hybrid than a true Amber but drinkable none the less

joepais, Mar 08, 2008
Photo of TheEremite
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Looked great. Dark brown with a tan head. It looked a bit like a porter, pretty dark for an amber or a red ale. Huge hop aroma. Smells like an IPA. Tastes of hop bitterness and malty crystal sweetness. Fairly pronounced chocolate notes. This beer is very full bodied for a red. In general I really like over hopped red ales, they're much more interesting than the usual malty, sweet and boring brewpub reds. I had low expectations for this beer and was pleasantly surprised. The first 1/4 of the glass was really nice, but the malt and hop bitterness began to build up and at some point it became a bit much. I like the idea of this beer, and I enjoyed drinking it, but it doesn't make for much of a session beer.

TheEremite, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of DefenCorps
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle received from largadeer. Thanks Chris. Into my Stone pint glass.

A: Deep amber with a little bit of sediment that i missed. Solid light brown head with great retention and excellent lacework

S: Lots of leafy hops up front but giving this a swirl reveals a good deal of citrus character. Mild caramel malt character in the back. Quite massive for an amber, acutally

T: Tons of bittering hops up front a lot of orange and citrus rind character. Mild caramel malt sweetness comes through before a completely bitter finish takes over.

M: Carbonation is ample but the bitterness is a bit overpowering IMHO

D: The bitterness is something that hurts the drinkability of the beer

DefenCorps, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of mynie
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a really magnificent dark red. Very dark, like grape juice, with translucence coming through only at the bottom of the glass.

Smells just a little bit of age, but a robust and tasty age. Light fruit, plenty of plums, and still enough hops to let me know that this was either an incredibly over hopped red or that it's not very old at all.

Taste like lightly aged malt and big west coast hops. Tastes like a well hopped red, pretty much. Malt and hops balance each other well, though not too many complexities come through.

Pretty good.

mynie, May 17, 2007
Photo of hopdog
3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle acquired in trade with jimbowood (thanks!).

Poured a deep and cloudy amber color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of caramel, oranges, and a little earthy. Tastes of caramel, citrus, and toffee. For an amber ale, I really liked this one.

Notes from 6/29/07

hopdog, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

HaveUSeenMyCellar, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of rbrefbeerman
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

rbrefbeerman, May 13, 2012
Photo of DaveHS
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours maple wood brown with ruby highlights and 1/4 inch of khaki colored head.

S-Piney sharp hop aromas, pale, grainy maltiness. An interesting sweet and sour fruit aroma. Strawberry?

T/M-Fairly dry. Mouth coatingly dry tannic hoppiness. Medium bodied, with a grainy, unobtrusive malt profile. This one's all about showcasing the hops. The finish is dry and bitter. It sticks in the back of the throat and lingers for a little while.

O-Solid. Definitely worth a try.

DaveHS, May 14, 2011
Photo of codynevels
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

codynevels, Nov 12, 2012
Photo of Pinche_Oso
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Pinche_Oso, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of beerpadawan
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

beerpadawan, Aug 27, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

zestar, Aug 06, 2014
Photo of ADZA
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice red hue and i mean red with a creamy three finger head that stays and leaves clingy lacing everywhere,the smell is burnt toffee,caramel malts,treacle and also some underlying piney hops,the mouthfeel is medium bodied with light carbonation and has tastes of marzipan,caramel treacle,redgum honey,piney bitter hops to keep that sweetness in check with the finish being dry and a touch bitter,overall its a nicely balanced Red Ale and id drink it again cheers.

ADZA, Sep 18, 2012
Photo of htomsirveaux
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle tried 19 Nov 2007. bottle courtesy of my brother, thanks!

Extra large huge cascading foamy head. Cloudy dark oak color. Smells like vanilla, tea, caramel, slightly floral. Tastes of sweet candied almonds. Fair amount of semisweet chocolate. Becomes more bitter towards the finish. Texture is foamy and creamy.

A says reminiscent of a chocolate orange.

htomsirveaux, Jun 29, 2010
Photo of hiku7
3.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma is dominated by caramel malt, toastiness, and a very slight roastiness. Citrusy hops, with a clean yeast profile.

Pours opaque red to brown with a long lasting cream color head. Three fingers high. Great lacing.

Flavor is mostly caramel, but there is a phenolic smoky off flavor that detracts a bit. Earthy woody lasting hop bitterness speaks of California origins.

This is a full bodied, creamy and somewhat chewy brew.

I love imperial amber/red beers, and this one is borderline in that category, but this one didn't capture my attention. A little disappointed in the smoky phenolics coming through. Overall, still not a bad beer and right up my alley, so my scores are probably higher than others might give it.

hiku7, Feb 01, 2012
Photo of kawilliams81
3.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a Jester King pint.

A- pours a light copper color with a 2 finger off-white head. Nice blotches of lacing cover the glass.

S- toasted amber malts, some rye, and some pine.

T- slight caramel flavor, toast, spice, citrus and some pine bitterness.

M- medium body and carbonation. Slight dryness lingers.

O- nice amber ale. Slightly dry and doesn't have a lot of citrus, but I like the rye spice in this beer.

kawilliams81, Apr 29, 2012
Photo of sweetbrew82
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass/ no freshness date

P: Dark brown with amber edges and a tan head that looks beautiful! The thick and creamy foam is 2 fingers tall and gets quite rocky, forming huge dimples as it deflates. A thick coating of lace plasters the glass with each and every sip. Nice!

A: Roasty toasty malts, caramel, brown sugar, and some piney hops. Smells pretty good, but nothing that'll blow you away with power or complex

T: The malts are more toasty upfront with caramel and brown sugar making for a sweet start. Pine resin and grapefruit-flavored hops soon make their way to the forefront to counterbalance the sweetness with some much needed alpha-acidity. The caramel malts seem to turn a little more roasty on the back end as the hops deliver a spicy kick on the semi-dry finish.

M: Medium bodied with not much creaminess or silkiness to talk about. It is semi-sticky from the hops, but feels a little over-carbonated, and isn't as smooth as it could be.

Notes: This is a pretty well-balanced American Amber that features some good, solid flavors with a nice hoppy bite to it. A solid effort from a good brewery. Worth a shot

sweetbrew82, Jul 20, 2009
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Expedition Ale from Drake's Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.