Drifter Pale Ale - Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Drifter Pale AleDrifter Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

405 Reviews
THE BROS
89
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 405
Hads: 955
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 7.92%
Wants: 23
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: madtappers on 12-23-2008

availability: year-round
bitterness: 32 IBU
alcohol by volume: 5.7%
original gravity: 14.0° PLATO

malts:
Pale, Caramel 20L, Caravienne 20L, Caramel 80L, Carapils

hops:
Bittering: Alchemy
Aroma: Summit, Nelson Sauvin
Dry Hopped: Summit, Nelson Sauvin
View: Beers (75) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 405 | Hads: 955
Photo of N3rdM3t4l
3.42/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz longneck into standard pint served at fridge temp (~45 F) no freshness date.

A: Kind of cloudy golden color with a slight reddish tint. Doesn't seem that pale to me, could be the caramel malt. No head but a decent looking ring and spotty very sparse cap. Looks pretty average.

S: Citrusy hops on the nose and a touch of malt. The malt is very light and the hops drowns out any sweetness that might come through because of the caramel malt. I like citrusy hops smell.

T: Sweeter than expected from the nose with just enough hop bite to balance but no lingering hop bitterness. The slightly sweet malt hits and then a wave of slightly earthy and lemony hops sweeps away the sweetness and it finishes with a twang of bitter that fades very quick. Slightly drying.

M: Medium bodied on the lighter side but that could be due to the temp of the beer. No surprises in this ones mouthfeel.

O: Not remarkable but not at all bad. Balanced drinkable pale ale. Can't say I wouldn't drink it again but would most likely shoot for something a little more impressive when I am buying. (1,079 characters)

Photo of dmadsen
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale ale color that I expect. Strong head with good lacing that stays with the glass. The smell is pleasant, with citrus notes. The taste is good, but not impressive. Flavor I expect from a Pale Ale. Appropriate balance and bitterness. Good floral notes that match the smell. The mouthfeel is clean, lightly carbonated. Strong overall beer. If I found it on tap on a pale ale kind of night, and there was no Summit EPA available, I'd order it. (443 characters)

Photo of DocJitsu
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear copper-amber with nearly no head at all. Very little lacing around the edges of the glass. The bouquet is characterized by sweet lemon, almost Pledge-like. There's a mild sting in the nasal passages that has a piggybacking aroma that is difficult to distinguish. A very nice, pleasing, balanced mouthfeel. Beef jerky and buttermilk flavors compete with a little tart citrus. Not a magnificent beer, but certainly a better effort than their lifeless hefeweizen. (474 characters)

Photo of Beer4Baltimore
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce with Feb 01 12 date on the bottle.
A - caramel tinted amber with a finger of lacy head.
S - lightly malty with a difinite caramel character and a touch of hops.
T - caramel sweetness with a subtle citrus hops aftertaste.
M - medium bodied with carbonation towards the lighter side.
D - easy drinking sweetness.
Not stellar but an easy going darker pale ale. (366 characters)

Photo of StaveHooks
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz. served into a SA perfect pint glass.

A - Pours a chilled hazed amber with a uniform off white.

S - Freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, soapy hops, soft cereal grain, strawberry. Biscuits really start coming out as it warms.

T - Soap and grapefruit hops with a sweet graham cracker malt center. The citrus zest is very clean and carries through to the finish. Some strawberry and spice notes linger.

M - Medium carbonation drops off and turns smooth and creamy, light bodied.

Love the grapefruit. Very clean citrus flavors. Nice graham cracker-like malt adds good balance. Light bodied and very session-able. (619 characters)

Photo of Mechphisto
3.36/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I wonder if the bottle I had was from a different batch than average, based what I'm seeing from other reviewers.
Mine poured a reddish amber, although nice and clear. The lacing was insignificant and quick to dissolve, but it had a nice carbonation.
The taste was a bit sour. Sharp and sour. Actually, it started out pretty sour but then became more malty as it went on. So, in a way, while it had an after-taste I wasn't that impressed with, the aftertaste actually improved my impression of the beer.
It felt a little heavy for its appearance. It had a touch of citrus and a bready base. I'd drink it again, but I wouldn't chose it over something else. (655 characters)

Photo of spinrsx
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle - from Total wine summerlin las vegas NV for 1.99$

Appearance - Clear copper colour with a large size frothy off white coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and the taste is made up of caramel and malts mixed with hops. It also has a bit of a sugary apricot flavour with a hint of pineapple and some grapefruit. It ends with a caramel/malty aftertaste with a some bittersweet notes.

Overall - A nice well balanced very drinkable pale ale. The flavours are fairly subdued, but they are good. I wouldn't pick this one up again, but I wouldn't turn it away if offered. There are just too many better beers out there. (828 characters)

Photo of DelMontiac
3.77/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 12oz bottle at Stillwater Wine & Spirits Warehouse in Stillwater, OK as part of a pretty cheap deal on a mix-a-6.

Drifter is a light amber which gives a finger's worth of white foam in a pint glass, but leaves very little lace.

Aromas are slightly grassy, but sweet like honey bread.

Even though the flavors are mild, they are enjoyable. You'll get bisquits and honey from it's malty backbone followed by a slightly flowery hop bite that fades back into white bread and butter. Pleasant.

I feel this a bit thin even for a pale ale. Still, highly drinkable and refreshing.

Pretty sure this was my first Widmer Bros brew. Pretty sure it won't be my last. (669 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.76/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden amber with a 2 finger head. Good retention.

Smell - Smells mildly of citrus hops, and of mildy sweet caramel malt.

Taste - Follows the nose. Light citrus hops and sweet, light caramel malt notes. Very mellow. Not much in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Decent carbonation. Very, very smooth.

Overall - A very approachable, very drinkable pale ale. What it lacks in bold or complex flavors, it makes for in a smooth, velvety texture and great balance. Session friendly. One of the better Widmer beers I've had. (557 characters)

Photo of Topher78
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Five different malts and four different hop varieties give this beer its unique flavor. The beer pours a amber color with about 1 fingers worth of an off white head that leaves nice lacing. Aromas of fresh picked oranges, lemons and tangerines shine through. The taste is equally delicious with a well blended malt to hop ratio with very little bitterness. Nice light mouth feel. (379 characters)

Photo of KTCamm
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Pours brilliant bright amber with very little initial or resulting foam. Sharp malt smell, lighter grassiness, some citrus. Bready taste, very mild hop keeps some sweetness in check. Touch of caramel. Mild carbonation keeps the smooth feeling. Subtle pale, good beer. (308 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a fairly vibrant orange hue. Nice head. Mostly clear. All in all a nice looking brew. Clean.

S-Smells quite full of juicy citrus-rind hops. I was pleasantly surprised. Nice malt skeleton too. An aromatic brew that has an enticing nose.

T-Tastes really nice as well. Akin to the nose. Plenty of fruity and juicy hops but the malt reminds you it is an APA. I imbibed this glass quite quickly and was a damn good time.

M-Pretty light with a bunch of carbonation. Could drink several pints of this because of the body.

O/D-Pleasantly surprised as I asked for a glass without being able to see the name of the beer. Just knew I hadn't tried it and was happy with the results. A pretty legitimate APA. Would have it again. (728 characters)

Photo of RedBiddy
3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A great thirst-slacker for summer time fun. For that reason I will use that vernacular. The color was sunny, and head followed the tide of beer as it ran up the side of my glass. OK lacing. The smell is what first caught my attention. It slapped my nose with demanding floral scents as soon as the seal was broken. The taste was mediocre but not exceptional. My mouth enjoyed the refreshing sensation but seemed thin on flavor. Overall way better than your average pale ale. (474 characters)

Photo of IPAguy2009
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Paid 7-8 bucks for a 6 pack of this stuff. Been drinkin it for years and was my "stepping stone" into the beautiful world of great beer.

A- when chilled it holds some haze. Good looking dark amber color. That of an okto ale. Pours a good head that gives sticky lacing!

S- tropical citrusy fruits. Lemon and grapefruit zest. Slight caramel in there with some syrupy malts.

T- malt hops malt hops! Back and forth. Ending in more lasting malt than hops. Mmmm. My favorite memory of this beer is when I didn't like beer at all I tried a sip of my brothers drifter and said wow it tastes like oranges a little bit. He said "naaaa" and I then read him the "distinct citrusy character" description off the six pack and noticed the dot in the i from the original design for the six pack was a orange slice. The rest is history with this beer :) so expect a great citrusy note!

M- semi thick. Good carb.

O- love it, always have. My solid go to beer anytime. Will be drinking this stuff forever. Get some! Love to Widmer (1,019 characters)

Photo of hustlesworth
2.72/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- clear copper colored with golden highlights. Oddly tan head is thin and unimpressive. Not much lace to speak of.

S- decent grapefruit and orange herbal spicy hops with some berry and toasted malt aromas.

T- a little toasty, a bit of wet dog, mild hop flavor and bitterness. Tastes diluted. Burnt grapefruit and grains in the finish.

MF- low end carbonation, dry rubbery feel, lighter than medium body.

D- finding a positive point, it's easily drinkable and refreshing due to the lack of flavor. the remainder of this bottle will go into a foil packet to keep a brisket moist while I reheat it. (604 characters)

Photo of TheFlern
4.02/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Amber with white head. Head dissipates into small layer and leaves little lacing.

Smell: Citrus hops and sweet malts. Hop aroma is citrus heavy mostly grapefruit and lemon.

Taste: follows the nose but a little more sweet than the nose would lead me to believe.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and creamy. Good amount of carbonation.

Overall: This is a pretty freakin' good pale ale from one of those "sellout" breweries. Widmer makes some good stuff and don't discount them just because they are owned by a bigger company. Give this one a shot if you have the chance. (576 characters)

Photo of hopfacebrew
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from brown 12oz bottle to pint glass the beer is a translucent lighter amber/copper color with a nice 1 finger head, some retention and lacing. A nice citrus nose with hints of grapefruit, orange, tangerine and a hint of piney resin. A light malt background. The taste again begins with a nice citrus character, mild bitterness, sweet crystal malt flavors. Finishes clean and crisp with a lingering citrus bitterness. Nice. Very approachable and drinkable, on the old drinkability score this beer would shine. Lighter bodied with good carbonation. Overall, a good APA. Perfect for a summer day, would be easy to put several down in a sitting. (649 characters)

Photo of tdm168
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale amber with a quarter of an inch of soft, foamy, white head that has decent retention. The nose has a citrusy, piny, resiny aroma. The taste is light and mildly malty but heavily hopped; there are notes of citrus, primarily grapefruit, as well as some very faint bread notes. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, smooth, and perfectly carbonated.

This is a well hopped, balanced, sessionable, enjoyable beer. In the APA category in my opinion it is among the most refreshing and drinkable. (507 characters)

Photo of edfish
4.49/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured in a pint glass about 1/2 inch head dark golden color, head fades fast, thin lacing.
S-Fantastic! Piney and light citrus. Fills your nose with anticipation!
T-Starts off the same as it smells, not as rich as the smell but good, leads to a light malt taste and finished crisp and dry.
M- Is decent the flavor and carbination are good
O-One of my favorite Pales. The hop character of this beer is its best feature, the smell starts you off just right! (457 characters)

Photo of Yoda22
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a fairly clear light copper - 1 finger head, light lacing.

S- Mmmm smells great. Citrusy, some grapefruit maybe even something resembling mango/tangerine? Also a hint of pine.

T- Taste leads to a more pronounced tropical citrus/grapefruit/mango like flavor. Nice lingering bitterness.

M- Light body, very smooth. Medium carbonation that leaves a little tingling on the tongue.

O- Delicious scene and taste. Not the best at anything and but above average on everything. Definitely among my favorite pale ale's. (523 characters)

Photo of Fatehunter
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass. Transparent copper color with a finger of head. Lots of bubbles visible.

Muted grapefruit smell with some lemon backup. A cotton candy smell too... odd.

Clean taste, crisp body, moderate carbonation. Mild malt, quick bitter bite, smooth ending.

1, 2, 3 "simple" good beer. (303 characters)

Photo of kjritt
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served from a bottle into a glass.

a. poured a short head with a bit of lacing. slightly murky red orange color. not as attractive as it tastes.

s. average at best. very little hop and the low ibus certainly supports that.

t. not as mild as many many other pale ales i have encountered, and much more character. exciting on the tongue and the back of the mouth. almost fizzy. a very strong pale ale.

m. carbonated and brisk. kind of dances around in the mouth. very exciting.

o. when i first discovered this several months ago, it immediately became my favorite pale ale. with flying dog and bass in the same conversation, it yet remains my favorite. (656 characters)

Photo of russwbeck
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Amber pour with hints of orange along the edges to deep brown at the middle. The beer pours into my Deschutes Tulip without much head at all.

S: Pretty fruity aroma here. Nice blend of caramel malts and citrus, mango, and other tropical fruits. Touch of hop bitterness.

T: The taste is a bit on the malty side. The tropical fruits are noted, but just aren't strong enough to provide a good balance. The hop bitterness on the end is quite nice and curbs the sweetness of the malts and fruits.

MF: Medium body with a normal amount of carbonation. Dry finish.

O: Pretty decent malt forward APA. Not the best, but I wouldn't turn it down if another was offered to me. (670 characters)

Photo of Greggy
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 of 3 in my tour of portland reviews.
Date on bottle: Sept 7th, 2011

A- Pours a slightly hazed orange/red body. No sediment is present. The tan head starts as 1 finger and recedes to a 1/4 inch cap. Sparse lacing is present.

S- Nice big aroma. Grapefruit, pine, a bit of orange marmalade. Good hop aroma.

T- Starts out with a very herbal/medicinal hoppiness. The finish is herbal and has a very medicinal/alcohol finish. I'm searching hard for a description but the finish is almost gin-like (herbacious and boozy).

M- Appropriate carbonation, a thinner body for the ABV.

D- Overall, a drinkable Pale Ale I can see going well with food. I'd like to have this again, definitely with a fresh bottle (maybe in portland). (727 characters)

Photo of Scotchboy
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes, sampled 12/25. 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Appears relatively clear. Coppery gold, off white head, minimal lace, visible carbonation.

S: Hoppy upfront, with a decent malt backbone; piney, herbal & earthy, a bit pungent, spices, and orange are the prominent aromas.

T: More malty, caramel, a bit of pungent bitterness...some toffee, and a dry biscuity malt presence.

MF: Light-to-medium, lower carbonation, with a light and pleasant dryness.

O: This APA maintains a good amount of pungent bitterness without going overboard; very quaffable and enjoyable. (579 characters)

Drifter Pale Ale from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 405 ratings.