Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Ballast Point Sculpin Review

Name: Ballast Point Sculpin
Style: India Pale Ale
ABV: 7%

Recently Ballast Point Brewing, a very well regarded West Coast brewery, started distributing here to Minnesota along with Green Flash Brewing. I decided to grab some of their Sculpin IPA upon hearing that it's amongst the best widely available IPAs on the market and, according to someone I talked to, it's comparable to that of drinking from the Holy Grail.

Well seeing as how the Sculpin is a poisonous fish that leaves a stinging sensation, which is something they proudly boast about in the commercial description, let's see if that is really true.

Sculpin pours a mildly hazy orange/amber color with some light carbonation and a semi-foamy head that has some good retention.

The aroma kicks things off with some very strong fruity notes which include, mango, apricots, citrus hops and grapefruit. Rounding it out at the end are some caramelized malts. Very fruity and somewhat malty; I've been encountering this alot more as of late.

The flavor is also very fruity and malt forward with citrus hops, grapefruit, apricot, mangoes, peaches, and some caramel maltiness. There's also some piney hops and resin-like notes in there as well throughout that were not in the nose. Sneaky sneaky!

The body is quite heavy and the carbonation, while had light appearance to it when first poured into the glass, is surprisingly aggressive in nature. What I mean by that is that it's not overwhelming but...stingy; Kind of like it's namesake fish.

I can safely say that this is, in fact, one of the best widely available IPAs on the market. It's got a rich & robust flavor, a nice aroma, and a body that's unique but doesn't hamper the overall experience. I would highly recommend checking this out, particularly if you're into the fruiter tasting IPAs!

Ballast Point Sculpin - 9.5/10

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