legion242 (2348) - Richardson, Texas, USA - SEP 28, 2004
POured fairly dark- nice lasting head. Nose was citrus overlapped my malt. The flavors also were an amazing blend of grapefruit and malt- I have to say this may have been the most tasty balance that I have ever had the pleasure of tasting. A fantastic brew and by the looks of it, not a very well known brewery. JahNoth (1039) - Rochester, New York, USA - MAY 6, 2005
I don’t know what theheck beer this is, but it is mighty tasty! Deep reddish amber in appearance with a fluffy head. Smells like an IPA citrus grapefruit and flowers are prominent. Rich mouthfeel with flavors of chocolate, sweet cherries and crystal malts, well balanced with a nice bitterness. Finished tantalizingly bitter. This is a sweet brew. Thanks to Ernie Flipbrewer for the plastic wrapped bottle. DarkElf (3062) - La Jolla, California, USA - APR 19, 2006
(12 oz bottle: BevMo in La Jolla, CA) Okay, I have no doubt now that, along with AleSmith, Pizza Port, Stone and Russian River, Drake’s is one of my five favorite breweries in the state of California. Is it even conceivable that Rodger and Melissa can brew a bad beer, or even a mediocre one? I think not. Expedition Ale is simply amazing. I bought a sixer figuring I’d rate one and send the other five out in trades, but I have my sincere doubts that any of the other bottles will make it til my next trade. Pouring the beer, it’s amber-brown in color with excellent clarity. The off-white head rises enthusiastically to about an inch in height and settles slowly to a thin but complete layer atop the beer, depositing significant amounts of patchy lacing on the glass. But wait, it gets better, much better! This is an exceptionally flavorful amber ale. Actually, even before tasting the beer, just bringing the glass to my mouth, the gregarious hop aroma bursts out of the glass and tantalizes my senses. Sweet, floral fruitiness and dry, toasty maltiness accompany the hops aroma, making one magnificent bouquet to savor to the fullest. And did I say this was tasty? Fine, I’ll say it again, wow, I can’t stop gushing over this beer. Beautifully malty, fairly roasty, lightly toasty, dry and earthy, yet only lightly sweet in the grand scheme of things. The bright, bitter, citrusy, herbal, and floral hops is more than up to the task of balancing the supreme maltiness, yet the beer stays balanced from start to finish. Amazing balance from start to finish, as well as a finish that doesn’t even begin to thin out. Body is medium-full from start to finish, yet has a dry, clean, crisp, refreshing and quite well-carbonated mouthfeel. Maybe this makes me a pussy, but this beer is so good, it brings tears to my eyes, and I mean that quite literally. I can’t say this any other way, or any clearer, this is an exceptional beer, at the top of its class. I rarely buy six-packs, and haven’t purchased a full case of 12-ounce bottles in, well, I think ever. I just might buy a full case of this. I’m THAT blown away. thewolf (12600) - Kolding, DENMARK - JUN 20, 2012
Bottle, bought @ Ørsted Ølbar, Cph.grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - JUL 3, 2005
Pours dark amber with a medium, frothy, yellowish head. Aroma has mild caramel, piney hops, light raisin, mildly toasted notes. A bit of strawberry and resin. Medium carbonation, super-lovely creamy mouthfeel. Good dryness. Flavour has a very elegant maltbase of caramel balanced with sharp, but never overpowering hops bitterness. Pine, grass, strawberries. Super balance. Really a wonderful drink.
My second Drake’s beer, and I continue to be impressed. This and their IPA both have phenomenal malt character, particularly in the aroma. I’m not sure what this beer is, but I really like it. It’s a very dark brown but is hopped like an IPA. Aroma is lightly doughy with molasses and some bourbon notes. Smells very woody, slightly floral and with a very rich freshly-baked dessert bread (raisin nut bread?) character. Starts off with a round mouthful of the wonderful base maltiness hinted at in the aroma, followed by a slightly charred sensation from the darker malts (roasted barley? darker crystal malts?) Hop flavors blend in very smoothly, consisting mainly of piney and apricot/peach notes. Nice body which coats the tongue well on the finish. My only complaint about this beer is that the sharpness of the dark malts and hop bitterness combine to make the finish very dry, but well, that’s just what you’re going to get when you make a beer like this.
mmmbeer (1425) - Austin, Texas, USA - MAY 20, 2008
12 oz. bottle in trade from stoutlover72- thank you. The brew was served in my shaker- poured blackish brown, transparent when held to a light source, low-light carbonation, very appealing frothy off white head formed (one finger thick) and very slowly laced away. Aroma of perfectly roasted malts, pine, and chocolate. Hits the mouth with a nice medium body, the malt delights the tongue while some sweetness and cream lingers in the background. In the middle, some nice hops greet themselves and stay around for the finish, which has a malty sweet tang to it. This isn’t an amber in my book, but I can tell what it is- DANG GOOD!!! GG (2332) - NorCal, California, USA - APR 7, 2006
An absolute pleasure to consume. The aroma is piney and citrusy, with a touch of sweetness. Appearance is just absolutely incredible with a sunset reddish/purple color and a nice fluffy head. Mouthfeel is medium to full. Flavor is roasty, hoppy, citrusy, and malty. A lovely beer. marcus (10231) - Sacramento, California, USA - MAY 21, 2006
This dark amber ale poured with a large tan head. The blend of malt and hops is exquisite. Starts off malty, then the hops catch up to provide a pleasantly bitter finish. Drake turns out one great beer after another. StewardofGondor (1934) - Washington Heights - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 7, 2006
Deep garnet and translucent with a thin but tannish-grey moss-like head hovering on top throughout the experience. Chocolate covered raisins team up with pomegranate fudge for one of the most unique aromatic concoctions, exploring additional nuances of elderberry bitterings, chocolate raspberry iced mochas, and walnuts on top of whole wheat brown bread. Flavor is emulated fairly well from that one-of-a-kind aroma. Some citric flavor hop activity livens the otherwise dark malt mood. Heavily caramelized with some scotchy traits. Chocolate raspberry breakfast smorgasbord pulls from cereal and coffee characteristics. Mild chocolate-rye activity to compliment the broiled prunes. Bitter backbone claims more palate territory than an amber would naturally acquire on its own. That being said, balance is out the window. This one’s a whimsical, successful celebration of craft brewing ingenuity. Brown sugar drums up support in the finish, coordinating with caramelized and slightly burnt chocolate plum pudding with an artesian touch of brandy flambé. Expect great things from Drakes. Big thanks to tpkenned for the bottle! elnadeau (786) - Laguna Niguel, California, USA - JUN 27, 2006
Brown amber with reddish highlights, appropriately sized medium head, overall appearance is excellent. Aroma is caramel malt with a substantial hop presence, flavor hits with sweet grainy malt and aggressive citrus hoppiness almost simultaneously. Mouthfeel is medium to full, finish is bitter clean and satisfying. I would say that this is more like a light version of an American Strong than a strong amber. Regardless of style, this is a terrific beer.