Friday, January 15, 2016

Ballast Point Grunion Pale Ale Review

Name: Ballast Point Grunion Pale Ale
Style: American Pale Ale
ABV: 5.5%
IBUs: 35

It's time to look at another beer from Ballast Point, and this time around it's their Grunion Pale Ale. Unlike another beer, which I'll talk about in a moment, this is a honest-to-goodness APA made with Mosaic & Calypso hops. I was told by an employee at the store I was at that it was not only better than beers like PseudoSue or Zombie Dust, but that it was the be-all, end-all of pale ales out there. Sounds ambitious to say the least.

On a side note, a couple winters ago, I reviewed their beer named Pale Ale. However, a pale ale, it was not but rather it was a Kolsch instead. Two years later, the labeling remains the same with the disclaimer that it's a Kolsch still being in tiny letters at the very bottom. Whatever, I'll let bygones be bygones, let's check the beer out.

Appearance - Hazy dark yellow with a moderate amount of visible carbonation. The head has a good amount of foam to it and the lacing retention is very good as well

Aroma - Marmalade & citrus sweetness upfront, followed by some orange peel notes. I'm getting a good amount of both pale & caramel malts, plus a light hint of yeastiness. It may sound bizarre, but I feel this smells like an IPA

Taste - Marmalade & grapefruit sweetness dominate the front of the palate, while the middle opens up to that toffee & pale maltiness. Towards the back is where that grapefruit sweetness shifts into more of a sweet orange flavor, albeit, with a significant amount of bitterness, along with some light yeasts. Aftertaste is quite dry, save for a lingering bitter hop resin flavor which fades after a few moments.

This is no doubt a good pale ale and has everything one is looking for in a good APA. The only problem? Much like Calm Before The Storm, it's very overpriced and that alone makes it harder to recommend this. I had to once again buy a single bottle of this as opposed to a 6-pack just so I can try it out. I can understand paying $15 for a six-pack of Dorado, but I can't understand why you would line price 80% of your beers at a cost that is higher than your competitors. I can see why if it were a superior product but.............

As for being the best pale ale on the market, I don't think it deserves a spot among beers like PsuedoSue or Alpha King, If you're willing to spend the money on a six-pack of this, then by all means, do so. As for me, there are better quality APA style beers out there available in my area that are priced a lot more reasonably

Ballast Point Grunion Pale Ale - 8/10

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