Castaway IPA - Kona Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Castaway IPACastaway IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

964 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 964
Reviews: 156
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 11.73%
Wants: 40
Gots: 331 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Kona Brewing Co. visit their website
Hawaii, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 02-21-2004

A full-bodied, American-Style I.P.A. that is bronze in color, Castaway IPA is "dry hopped" (aged with liberal amounts of whole hop flowers after fermentation) for assertive hop flavor and aroma. The bitterness is balanced by the malty body of the beer.

65 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 964 | Reviews: 156
Reviews by KVNBGRY:
More User Reviews:
Photo of woodychandler
3.3/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was over at The Fridge earlier today and I acquired a few more bottles, this being among them. I was going to hold this in abeyance until a little while ago, when I got word that a dear friend, former shipmate and fellow member of the USS Normandy's SDBG passed away. Ken Longshore and I had just met up at a 25-year reunion a couple of weekends ago and like me, he was a hophead. I raise this AIPA (and all subsequent ones) in his memory!

From the bottle: "Since 1994, Kona Brewing Co. has been committed to making handcrafted ales and lagers of uncompromised quality."; "We invite you to visit our brewery and pubs whenever you visit Hawaii. Mahalo!"; "Fresh, Responsible, Always Aloha"; "Set Sail for Adventure! Hawaiians crossing the channel between Oahu and Molokai face a perilous journey. Our Castaway IPA is inspired by these brave island explorers. A smooth yet spirited brew, it's as refreshing as the wind in your face when you set sail for adventure."

I was pressed for time and so I used a heavy-handed pour to get things started. Following a quick mini pseudo-cascade, I was left with two dense fingers of bone-white head with excellent retention. Color was Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 - 5) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a tropical fruit hoppiness, fitting for this company and including notes of pineapple, mango and guava. As the head finally fell, I was left with lots of nice, sticky lacing. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was fruity, but kind of bland at the same time. I do not know how to precisely quantify it, but it just seemed to be lacking any Ooomph! It was passable as far as the style is concerned, but there are so many better examples that this one pales in comparison. Finish was slightly bitter, kind of fruity, but just lacking in depth and cohesiveness.

Photo of flagmantho
3.95/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a clear mug.

Appearance: light golden hue with a touch of haze and a light effervescence. Head is two fingers of creamy eggshell foam. Quite nice, in my book.

Smell: a little bit of sweet malt with a fruity, tropical hop character. This is among my favorite hop aromas, so I'm rather smitten with this beer.

Taste: sweet malt with those same tropical hops from the aroma. I really dig this beer.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a decent carbonation and an OK creaminess for the style. Not bad, but not the best thing in the world.

Overall: OK, so the texture's nothing to write home about, but the flavors are right in my butter zone. Great stuff.

Photo of oberon
3.81/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dull brass color with a tightly formed full one finger bone white head atop that left nice lacing as it settled slowly.Muted citrusy hop aromas with even lighter caramel/biscuit notes as well.citrusy with a little bit of sweet onion lingering on the palate,not overly bitter more of sweet fruity hoppiness,biscuit malt holds underneath.Not a bad IPA with it's fruitiness instead of bitterness,I could see myself drinking this on a beach in Maui.

Photo of generallee
4.17/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass. The label lists the abv at 6 %. It also has a freshness date and a short description of the beer.

Appearance: The body is cloudy and has a light golden color. It’s head was small and settles quickly. It keeps just a wispy thin film with a ring of creamy bubbles at the edge of the glass.

Smell: There is a nice hop character in the nose. It brings notes of citrusy grapefruit and tropical pineapple to the nose.

Taste / Palate: The flavor is medium bodied with nice juicy hop flavor though out. It has very nice light bready malt sweetness backing up the citrusy and tropical fruity hop flavors. It finishes with just a quick flash of very mild hop bitterness. It feel light, but not thin and it is very drinkable.

Notes: If you’re a hard core hop head this may not be for you but I love the balance and drinkability in this beer. This may also be a good IPA for craft beer newbies or people who like hop flavor with out heavy enamel stripping bitterness.

Photo of PaulBater
2.5/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Almost has an aftertaste of cat pee...

Photo of MattyG85
4.24/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a bright and clear golden orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About two fingers of white head that slowly fade into a thin creamy layer. Leaves a good amount of lacing.

Smell: A juicy, earthy, and crisp hop forward aroma with hints of citrus fruit and pine. Citrus hops with upfront hints of grapefruit, orange peel, mango, pineapple, lemon, and tangerine. Earthy and floral hops with some hints of grass and pine resin. Solid backing of bready malt with hints of caramel, grains, cracker, biscuit, and yeast. A pretty solid IPA aroma.

Taste: Like the nose hints at, a very juicy and nicely earthy hop forward taste with big notes of citrus fruit and pine. Citrus hops with upfront juicy notes of mango, grapefruit, orange peel, lemon, pineapple, apricot, and tangerine. Earthy and floral hop presence with notes of pine resin and grass. Good background of malt with sweet notes of caramel, biscuit, cracker, grains, and yeast. Pretty hop forward and nicely bitter. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Juicy and fairly oily with a drying finish.

Overall: A very good West Coast style IPA. Big tropical citrus flavor with some nice pine and malt notes.

Photo of tyleeis
4.66/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Really good ipa, very drinkable, good hop flavor slight bitterness with a nice malt balance. To me this is more comparable to some of the popular pale ales out now, this has a session ipa feel to it. Low carbonation and light aftertaste leaves a little to be desired but an overall great beer

Photo of Henry_Stahl
4.41/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

overall a phenomenal IPA for how much I paid for it

Photo of Auraan
3.77/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a gorgeous cloudy golden color with two fingers of fluffy white head that slowly receded leaving lacing down the glass. Quite the nice appearance, very true to form for an IPA. Scents of citrus peel, grapefruit, grapefruit rind, tropical fruit, pineapple mostly, and faint hints of pine. A solid IPA aroma, nothing standout, but nicely aromatic and true to style. Flavor begins with fairly bitter with notes of pine resin, citrus peel moving into higher bitterness levels with notes of pine resin, citrus peel and floral, citrus blossom. Finish is dry with pine resin and bitter citrus peel and pith notes. A slight sweet malt backbone balances the bitterness throughout. Aftertaste is dry with notes of pine resin, orange peel, grapefruit peel and floral hops. A nice flavor profile. True to style, though not standout in any real way. Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with a resinous feel and moderate carbonation. Quite nice, true to style and smooth. Overall a pretty good IPA that is nicely true to style, with a nice aroma and flavor. Nothing out of the ordinary but pleasant.

Photo of Brenden
3.76/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Amber in color, translucent and moderately bright, this IPA's sandy colored head doesn't achieve much height, but it's stronger than it looks. The foam maintains for the session, keeping strong at the edges as well as the thick layer that leaves behind some heavy spotting after a ring where it settles.
This beer shows the hops pretty well; it could be a bit hoppier, but the overall effect and the balance are good. The features are mostly dank and raw, pretty earthy overall, while demonstrating a striking similarity to ganja leaf in the middle. Just enough sweetness, including a touch of caramel, do enough to even out the bitterness and the dryness as herbal leaf goes into the finish.
The body is medium and holds up from the front of the sip to the finish, with a leafy dryness coming into the feel as well. It keeps crisp the whole way through and has the clarity and brightness despite the dank character.

Photo of samtrillo
3.94/5  rDev +5.1%

Once again a beer incorrectly rated by its BA score based off the brewery in question IMO, but I should stop caring about such things. Not that I'm rating this super high or anything, just think it's a little better than its score is all.. I digress.

The nose features a sweet malt complimented by piney citrus hoppiness.

The taste is similar but expands upon the nose .as it should. Grapefruit and pineapple bitter hops are met by a sweet bready malt which give this IPA a balanced tone. Might be too sweet for hop heads, though. Might be too bitter for the lager drinkers out there.

Overall, it's not shattering worlds, but it's good. It's not like I'm going to keep going after it because the market is saturated with similar IPAs but Kona does their job here offering a very drinkable beer here.

Photo of biboergosum
3.23/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A pint at the brewpub in Kona.

This beer pours a clear, bright golden amber hue, with one fat finger of tight foamy off-white head, which leaves some nice layered tree branch lace around the glass as it sinks away.

It smells of reserved grapefruit and orange citrus, a bit of lemon, and mild bready caramel malt. The taste is white grapefruit peel, pine tips, semi-sweet caramel, and a further, somewhat interloping herbal/floral hoppiness.

The bubbles are a bit snappy, the body a medium-light weight, and with a not-so-subtle metallic edge, one which messes heavily with any latent smoothness aspirations. It finishes hoppy, and mostly dry, with the citrus and pine notes having a hard time rising above that invasive herbal character.

While this feels, and looks like a proper west coast IPA, there is just too much musty, zippiness-flattening essence to earn my seal of hoppitude goodness. Maybe the next of Kona's many other IPAs will fit the bill.

Photo of dacrza1
3.39/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

DATE TASTED: January 10, 2015... GLASSWARE: Barley Creek pint... OCCASION: playoff football--lose, Ravens!... APPEARANCE: mildly hazy orange amber body that holds steady effervescence; promising, pillowy, creamy white head that looks like sea foam; beautiful, stratifying lacing ... AROMA: light oats suggest the much-understated hops; tough to distinguish either the citrus or pine here... PALATE: rather creamy, soft and mild-mannered; plays slightly on the teeth, but also hides some cough syrup tendencies in it ...TASTE: hop are crunchy pine but easily sessionable; mango and pear are present too, but as IPAs go, apologetic in its exit--not substantial, though that may be the target of Kona, as they have a half-dozen IPAs in their portfolio, it seems... OVERALL: first, thanks to Dave for the New Year's Day beer visit...points are scored for the Hawaiian island chain impressed upon the bottle, too; the beer is solid, not spectacular, and sessionable too...

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.76/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a touch hazy and golden in color with an off-white, half finger head.Fair retention, giving way to a broken layer of surface suds. Lacing is small and spotty with good stick.

Smell - Tropical notes at the forefront; mango, pineapple and light orange. touches of bready malt.

Taste - Follows the nose to a lesser degree. Mango sweetness with hints of pineapple and orange, backed by a fair cracker malt body. Very little in the way of bitterness. Finishes with very faint orange pith and light breadiness.

Mouthfeel - A bit thin for the style, with fair carbonation. Smooth, but a touch watery.

Overall - A decent to good IPA. Seems to be missing a bit of bitterness, and a little thin to boot. Still, the flavors there are nice. Certainly a candidate for hot summer days, which is likely the intent behind it.

Photo of secondtooth
4.02/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow, with medium head of fine white suds. Nice tree-line lace.

Nose is lovely tropical fruits and citrus hops. Yum!

Tastes rich and heavy with plenty of tropical notes amidst the bright and hoppy profile. I get a spicy, bread malt presence in there underneath, too. A solid and superb IPA.

Photo of hreb
3.5/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Castaway IPA in a 12oz bottle from the mainland bottling facility. This bottle is dated May1514. Beer pours pale golden in color with a moderate white head. Very nice so far. There's a something metallic about the aroma, but otherwise it's a nice citrus/tropical hop blend. Flavor is initially quite bitter, with a serious dose of IBUs, at least for a single IPA without a big body, but it actually finishes quite neutral and clean. It's actually textbook American IPA: thin body, slightly fizzy, a little too bitter, but still remarkably well balanced and finishes dry.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.95/5  rDev +5.3%

Kona Castaway IPA
12 oz. custom-molded brown glass bottle, dated "12:16 3 JUL 11 14"
$1.79 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes: Beautiful packaging all-around. Beautiful looking beer: frothy off-white head, excellent head retention and lacing, slightly hazy golden amber body. Welcoming, brightly pungent and citrusy aroma. The hop flavors (resinous, citrusy, floral) are balanced against the malt, and backed by a solid bitterness. The grainy, biscuity malt is clear up front, but becomes even fuller in the finish - kind of the opposite of many IPA's these days. The malt is the base that the hop flavors bounce around on. Medium body/crisp, median carbonation. It's a fairly straightforward beer, but it's full flavored and rich in character. It's balanced, and neither the bitterness or the hop flavors build on the palate. Drinkable. Great hop character.

Photo of Bierleichen
2.94/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

An overabundance of Hops equals only bitterness a good balance between malts and hops is perfectly fine IPAs have entirely too much bitterness

Photo of russpowell
3.97/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is 7 weeks old, but the freshest bottle I've found to date, This can be my placeholder review...

Pours an effervescent gold/bronze with a finger of pearl white head. Insane lacing & head retention

S: Crackery notes, lemons, pineapple & grapefruit

T: Follows the nose, grapefruit & pineapple dominate, a little mango as well up front. Faint caramel notes, grapefruit pith & pine as this warms. Finishes with a flourish of tropical fruit, a little mineral dryness & some biscuitty malt notes

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation, nice balance

Drinks easy, I have no complaints on this one. I would buy this again unless something bordering on world-class pushed this out of the sight-picture; a damn good deal to be sure

I sure seem to be swimming against the tide of recent reviewers, but that's just how it goes, some times

Photo of KarmicSkrambl8
2.87/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

thin, flat flavor, flat nose, nothing remarkable to me

Photo of HalfFull
3.05/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass. The Castaway is deep golden in color and sports a half inch cap of foam. Light retention yet showing a thin cap through the pint.

Nose of bright citric hops and a touch of grain. A dead ringer for one of Widmer's Rotator beers but I can't put my finger on it right now. Taste follows with a citric flavor yet offers only a light bitterness as for balance.

Easy drinking yet uneventful in nature, so so as we say.

Photo of KYGunner
3.55/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Light golden color, very clean and filtered looking, this had a very fizzy head with no retention.

The nose is toned down but the hops are evident. The hops are lemony, floral with an evident malt backbone.

The flavors are not overly diverse but delicious. I catch a floral hop character with some herbal onion, chive and cannabis. A little honey and caramel serve as the backbone and do even this IPA.

The feel is rather full but light and easy. The astringency is less than moderate so it drinks very nice on a hot day.

Photo of tone77
3.59/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of citrus, hops. Taste is hoppy, pine, some citrus, a touch of malts, medium bitterness. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

Photo of puboflyons
3.72/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 15:26-3-APR2514. Sampled on May 23, 2014.

The pour is mostly golden with a big, fluffy white head that fades slowly and leaves a coating of lacing clinging to the glass.

The aroma has a variety of characteristics including toasted grain, light caramel malts, pine, resin, and grapefruit. Smells like a well developed IPA.

Light to medium body but it does not hold up well as it breaks down to carbonation bubbles quickly.

Mild to moderately sweet flavor overall with an emphasis on the toasted grains and the pine bitterness hailing me from the rear. Quite easy to drink.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -6.7%

Bottle: Poured an amber/orangey color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of citrus hops with light floral undertones is quite nice. Taste is also dominated by citrus hoppy notes with light bitterness and some dry caramel malt. Dry hops notes are not as dominant as I would have expected based on the product description. Body is about average with good carbonation. Enjoyable IPA but nothing I would seek again necessarily.

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Castaway IPA from Kona Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 964 ratings.