Driftwood Ale
Montauk Brewing Company

Driftwood AleDriftwood Ale
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English Pale Ale
Ranked #59
Ranked #36,480
3.68 | pDev: 11.96%
Montauk Brewing Company
New York, United States
Driftwood AleDriftwood Ale
Notes: Our flagship ale is brewed with American hops that even out of it's malty base. This well-balanced English Style Pale Ale is enjoyable all year round.
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Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 139
Photo of woodychandler
3.84/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gotta give it up for m'man, Jimmy B from NYC! We wagered a six-pack on the Pens/Rangers series back during the 2015-'16 NHL playovs & he actually came through. I would have preferred a mixed-sixer, but since I did not specify, it was sehr gut. I doled out the rest acCANdingly with one held in abeyance for The CANQuest (tm).

From the CAN: "'Come As You Are'"; "Established 2012".

For a relatively new brewery, they seem to have a pretty good presence. I saw them on-tap at Penn Station during a recent layover. Now, it was time for the Crack! to be followed by a gentle Glug. I was rewarded with the quick formation of two-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, tawny head with modest retention, slowly slinking away to wispiness, but leaving nice lacing in its wake. I waffled on its color. Was it solid Amber or Golden-Amber (SRM = >7, < 9 OR > 5, < 7)? The onrush of The Gelt Gang as they ran in from the living room where they were watching the black & Gold-clad Pirates on TV answered that CANundrum! Nose had a honey-like malty sweetness with a slight pine presence. Mmm. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, not quite creamy, but on the approach. The taste had a pronounced earthy maltiness, like buckwheat pancakes, with a light piney bitterness. It reminded me very much of an early imported English IPA, perhaps McEwan's (?) that I drank & felt disappointed. It was then that I had an epiphany that AmeriCAN IPAs are MUCH more hoppy & bitter than their original ancestors. This beer was much like that, sans disappointment. In fact, I would have been disappointed if it had been super hoppy. This is one that I would like to find on hand-pump when I head out to Long Island in late-July. Finish was semi-dry & a nice palate cleanser, but one was good. I look forward to more of their beers as a result!

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Photo of Boto
3.69/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Draught: This one pours a hazy amber color. There was a bit of an off-white head that leaves some lacing. Nose is malts, earthy, some nuttiness. The taste is good. Some bitterness. Malts, earthy hops, a touch of nuttiness. Decent!

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Photo of Gajo74
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a semi clear amber color. Nice moderate lathery head, good retention, yields a creamy film and rings of frothy lacing.
A rich malt aroma, nutty, biscuity, and graham cracker also emits a fruity sweetness. It is redolent of berries and orange marmalade. A touch of floral hops is also present.
Malt forward but balanced. The malt profile is nutty, dry, and a moderate sweetness. The sweetness is fruity, jam like and with a hint of apples. In contrast, the finish has an earthy bitterness that is quite bold, and evokes grass, bark and tobacco.
Medium bodied, smooth, even creamy. Carbonation is gentle.
A pleasant English Pale Ale.

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Photo of ajm5108
4.14/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pretty simple but good beer - good English hop profile, malt is balanced, something easy to drink that delivers on some classic flavors without muddying the waters

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On draft, shaker pint glass

Clear medium copper golden color. Thin white head. aroma is earthy hops and cracker like malt. Similar flavor, a bit bready and moderately bitter. Medium bodied.

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Photo of pro45
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Can with BB date of 3/18/18 so this is relatively fresh. Pours a gold/copper color with a tan head. Smell is dominantly dark bread and caramel. Taste is a strong tea and dark bread combo. Throw in some spice, caramel malts, toffee, and butterscotch. Mouthfeel is medium to light and finishes dry. Excellent beer for the style. Will buy again.

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Photo of Act25
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A favorite style. Tho I'd place this at APA rather than EPA. Very different from my favorite beer (DALES), but equally original in an APA format.

A- On draft pours (at the National) a deep copper- amber body. The head offers a thick, rocky, and creamy one finger cap that retains and laces in a way that foretells the creamy solid feel the beer delivers.

S- English styled but fresher with malt bill of toast, toffee, crystal malt, and crackers with the English yeast offering pear and apple core and orchard. The bright, light hops finish the profile.

T- Follows the smell. Light and fresh yeasty malt bill with brighter, bigger hop. Pear, apple, yeasty, outdoor roundness.

MF- Crisp medium body with a creamy, frothy, body that finishes dry and smooth. "I'll have another" Enough body to drink slowly, but inviting a second. A real beer.

I dont mind giving this beer a higher mark that others. I want 12 or a case in fridge. Try 24.

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Photo of cbutova
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A- Can to a pint glass with a deep copper almost amber body. The head peaks at about a finger high with a thick and creamy consistency and good retention. Lacing is comprised of tall sheets that form after each sip.

S- Those amber malts aren't just for the appearance as the grains give a wide range of flavors with toast, toffee, crystal malt, bready, biscuit and freshly mashed barley notes. Hints of the English yeast with some esters like pear and even a hint of raisin coming out. The American hops are somewhat secondary to the malts with a generic hop aroma.

T- Balanced out with the hops coming out a bit more compared to the smell. Malts forward and then the hops and yeast are just about tied in strength. Again a well rounded amber toasty malt profile with cereal, bread, biscuit, cracker, toffee, butterscotch and a light sweetness; fleeting cocoa hint too. Balancing that out are hints of pear, apple, yeast dough along with floral, slight citrus (Cascade?) and herbal hops.

MF- Crisp medium body with a frothy and somewhat fizzy texture. The consistency holds up and it is not thin or watery. Very high level of carbonation with a bittersweet, toasty finish. Silky smooth.

I like the malts here. They are both the star of the show and they get a good range of flavors from those grains keeping the beer bold and balanced. A hint of American hops comes in especially on the palate and makes for a good overall brew.

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Photo of elxpress
3.94/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a dirty pint glass. Amber color, slightly cloudy. Thin head, and watery, wilting lace. Crisp, refreshing raisin-berry balanced with bitter pine notes. Not too much, not too little. Just right. Medium carbonation and viscosity (perfect in my opinion). Well-balanced bitter and sweet flavors on the tongue, with an excellent bitter (but not dry or overbearing) finish. Thoroughly flavorful, yet drinkable, and ultimately enjoyable experience. This beer isn’t extravagant nor does it pretend to be. It’s the perfect go-to when you want a damn good beer but aren’t in the mood for "extreme" or "exciting." It reminds me of a slightly sweeter Boston Lager with less of the off-putting bitterness. Certainly a pleasant surprise as I grabbed this on a whim at my local bodega. I will be purchasing this regularly.

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Photo of Meyers1023
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured a copper color with a good amount of bubbly head. The nose is all malt and biscuits. The flavor is mostly biscuits but you get a good bitter finish from the hops. Very good English style pale ale.

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Photo of moodenba
4.19/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

8/5/2016. 6% alcohol. Can brewed in Westminister, Ma, at 50F poured into a newcastle british half pint.

Medium density head. Beery aroma. Deep amber color. This beer's flavor is just what I'm looking for. Roasted malt and hop character are well balanced and finely integrated.

Thirst quenching and satisfying. Since the initial review, Driftwood has become my favorite English-style ale. It always seems to satisfy me, and I've raised my numerical ratings from the initial review

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Photo of dgmirelli
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

on tap in a pint glass from a bar, some notes below say amber, copper etc. this was lager/pilsner yellow and a mighty tasting pilsner, oh wait it is classified as a English pale ale.......not much hoppiness to note as an EPA

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Photo of tone77
3.32/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A thanks goes out to the founding father of the canquest, woodychandler, for this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a dark golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is very mild, some malts. Taste is malts up front, hops at the finish, light pine notes. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a mediocre beer.

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Photo of Phigg1102
3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pretty well balanced beer. Clear copper color with about a finger of loose foam settling into a thin cap with lots of lacing. Lots of malt in the aroma, quite bready with subtle esters. Hops come through nicely in the taste, a touch floral with a berry taste coming through. Medium body with medium carbonation.

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Photo of Stignacious
3.67/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Not as robust as I was expecting, but balanced. Hops and malt meld on the palate before fading relatively quickly. Definitely get the earthy and piney notes above most others. Hoping for a worthy opportunity from this part in colleg.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Fruity, Crackers, Bitter, Balanced

Coming in at 49 IBUs for an English Pale Ale is pretty bold but that is the American thing to do right? Bold but not aggressive or overwhelming in any aspect. Quite the flagship brewski we have here, sloshing around big mugs of this beer should be in order but well take the convenient can as well. Well done Montauk!

STYLE: English Pale Ale | ABV: 6.0% | AVAILABILITY: Year-round

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #91 (Aug 2014)

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Photo of Billolick
3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can

Pours typical darker honey amber, moderate fine bubble head, leaves a decent film, fine bits of lacing and thin collar.

Caramel malty nose.

More caramel and ripe fruits picked up, with ripe apples coming to mind.

Pleasant enough English style pale that is on the malty side....better then decent local beer in a can, what could be wrong with that?

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Photo of thezach
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It's a vibrant copper-orange hue with a fine head that quickly dissipates. The aroma is pleasant, sweet grains, a light caramel and bread quality to it. It's the taste that really blows me away. I've come to really enjoy well-made (and generally fresh) English bitters and pales. This stands up well against some of the others I've had. Some sweet fruitiness, bread, and some complexities that I just can't put my finger on. While it's sweet, though, it has a wonderful dry mouthfeel and is balanced by a bitter snap on the finish. Maybe not traditionally English, but certainly delicious. I wish I had more than one, because I could drink this all day.

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Photo of JohnSand
3.56/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A solid English Style Pale. Had on tap at O'Murphy's in Montauk. Thin head, nice color, very drinkable. Good body with a mild hop finish. I would order this again. In fact, I did.

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Photo of Gmann
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a toasted straw color with a big airy off white head that slowly settles into a fluffy cap.

The aroma is quite faint, I don't pick up much. Some grain and sweet but that is about it.

The taste is grainy with a slight toffee note. A little veggie. Some grassy hop bitterness. A bit of metal or hard water.

The feel is light with prickly carbonation. Mostly sweet on the palate with a touch of bitterness in the finish. Drinks well enough.

A decent pale ale. No real off flavors but nothing exciting.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off white froth over pale chestnut body.
Big butterscotch nose with some toast and flowers.
Caramel and hazelnuts with apple skins, then spicy ginger finish.
Tannic end and super dry linger.
Medium, slightly oily, crisp.

So dry! IBUs plus acidic malts add up to an almost harsh cutting end. Could this substitute for a hop bite, making this a gateway beer that also pleases hop heads? More to it than the average American ESB, anyway.

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Photo of Brenden
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From Empire State Cellars in Tanger (Riverhead); notes are from 5/29

This beer has the fiery red-orange color and clarity of a garnet. The head, just slightly off-white, almost seems spritzy but settles a rocky half finger that drops bubbly lacing in pretty good quantity.
The hops profile in the nose makes me wonder if Noble hops were used. Grass and a gentle peppery note stick it out as a subtle sweetness counters what little bitterness there is, and there's a little herb. Interestingly, it gives off a sort of savory note as it goes.
More sweetness and toast are showcased on the tongue with a light herbal bitterness underneath but carrying well.
The body and feel are light, crisp and airy but with substance. Overall, it's smooth and clean.

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Photo of beerloserLI
2.71/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Clear amber ale with a very light sweet and malty smell. The nose is really non-existent.

Drinking comes off as a pretty average ale. Light and malty start with subtle sugars of an esb on the finish. Tends to drink more as an amber ale rather than a true esb.

It's not horrible and I could see it's use as an ok session ale. I could easily knock a few of these back while grilling or at the beach/pool and be just fine.

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Photo of Toemas
2.36/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Montauk Driftwood Ale : Found at my 7-11 beautiful yellow and white can 9.99/6pk

Fouls smelling , and tasting too, "Pale Ale"- pours a darker amber with very little head.
Tastes similar to a Coors Extra Gold- or perhaps Lionshead- Contracted out by Montauk to a MA Brewer---Nothing good to say except the Can- 2014-

On tap it may be delightful.... ESB as it claims

Adjuncts prevail in this beer with corn like taste.

Foul, Keep your money...better spent on the Ruthless Rye or Flying Bitch options at the Sev.

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Photo of Willytee3
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fresh Growler into pint glass.

Pours a rich amber color with slighlty hazy hue. Large bubbly head on best pours is off white.

Malty sweet smell with dry dates and hint of pine sap hops.

Medium bitter up front with very light carbonation typical for the style. Medium body with a light caramel sweetness and pine hop following up bitter. Long finish with dry malt, light bitter and a hint of grape skin.

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Driftwood Ale from Montauk Brewing Company
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 139 ratings