I’ve long heard of San Diego’s Ballast Point Brewery, but have only recently begun trying some of their beers. Boy howdy am I glad I have as the few beers I’ve tried are all consistently top notch. As I’ve mentioned before, I tend to gravitate towards varieties of beers that are in season: porters and stouts for the winter, mid-to-light ales in the spring, wheats in the summer, and all the pumpkin in the fall. That being said, an IPA transcends all time and season. That is certainly true with Ballast Point’s excellent Sculpin.
Ballast Point’s Sculpin IPA
Right from the get-go Sculpin announces itself as a healthy and robust IPA. With only a brief whiff one gets that awesome earthyness of a boatload of hops. Hidden behind the hoppy goodness is a hint of citrus that valiantly competes for the nose’s attention.
On the first taste, Sculpin shows itself to be a very balanced beer. The hops leap right out and one gets the impression of crisp, fresh cut grass. There are some subtle undertones of the sweet citrus, which does a bit to undercut the sharpness of the hops. That being said, it does have a bit of a bite that might turn off folks that aren’t completely sold on the whole excess of hop movement.
Interesting side note: a sculpin is a bottom dwelling fish that has little grippers that help it attach to the bottoms of bodies of water.
10/10 for beers named after bottom dwelling fish
9/10 for West Coast IPAs
8.5/10 Overall. Excellent IPA with full flavors and refreshing aftertaste.