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Big Hop IPA - East End Brewing Company

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Big Hop IPA
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very good

215 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 215
Reviews: 94
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.23%
Wants: 7
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: WVbeergeek on 12-07-2004

The first of the brews from Pittsburgh’s newest and MICRO-est microbrewery to hit the streets. Truly, a hopped-up American IPA with loads of Centennial and Cascade hops, and just barely enough malt backbone to balance it out. Our flagship brew
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 215 | Reviews: 94
Photo of umtox
3.11/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Fairly light without much head

S: Faint hops and citrus

T: Clean and crisp, moderate hop, with almost no detectable sweetness, very little bitterness for an IPA and a nice change of pace from the heavy-hitters of this class.

M: Much lighter on the palate than most IPAs, very crisp and dry

D: More so than many IPAs because of the relatively low ABV and therefore, more than one can be enjoyed.

East End has come up with a unique IPA that sits on the lightest fringe of this class, a good beer to try to enjoy the full range of IPAs.

Photo of Kolsch
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just tapped on my home system. Kegged date 2.22.08.

I have had this beer many times before, but never on my home system. I really like this beer for its low ABV alone.

Taste is dry, malty, hop. Nose is minimal, not much happening there, but the taste makes up for that. I don't get much sweetness out of this as others do and thats the way I like my IPAs. Though I really believe this resembles a "hoppier" APA rather than IPA.

Very sessionable and highly recommended if you are in the Pittsburgh area. Stop by for Growler hours at East End and get one to go. Soon!

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Roland's in the strip district.

Hazy amber/orangish color with off white head. Leaves some nice foamy lacing along the sides of the glass.

Not a huge aroma here, just faint citrusy hops comes through.

The very first flavor is a bitter hop bite followed with a tasty citrus/grapefruit flavor. The whole hop experience is underlined with just a slight malt backbone to balance it out a little.

Mouthfeel is what you expect from an ipa, light and bubbly.

This brew is extremely easy to drink because the overall flavor is very mellow, no very strong bitterness. The main flavor characteristic is citrus, and even that is not extremely potent.

Photo of jeremy13586
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just picked up a fresh growler yesterday during their Growler Hours. Pours a big bubbly head that hangs around for a while, but eventually dwindles in to nothingness. The body is a nice cloudy copper color. Very floral in the nose.
Starts off a tiny bit watery, but then the hops hit you in full force. There is just enough sweetness. Finishes clean and smooth. I could drink this stuff all day long as long as I had enough growlers on hand.

Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Sharp Edge Creekhouse.

Pours a clear amber with a thin white head that retains well and leaves a beautiful latticework of lace down the sides of the glass. Aroma is sweet citrus notes and a spicy hop presence.

The taste is big on citrus and hops up front but then melds into a undercurrent of malt sweetness and spice that provides a good balance. Finishes with a nice bite of lingering bitterness at the end. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice tingling carbonation.

There's something about this IPA from East End that I think could use just a tad more oompth to jack it up a level but I can never seem to put my finger on it. Still very servicable though and very good for the style. I'd never turn down a pint!

Photo of irishevans
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not typicaly an IPA guy so this may seem a bit off to those who are. nice deep gold colour, very sharp hoppy nose which is deceiving of the taste which is perfectly mellow smooth start and crisp but not overwhelmingly hoppy finish. extremely drinkable IPA, give her a try

Photo of LeftyBWS
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank this a few days ago and took some notes. Poured from a 1/2 gallon growler filled fresh earlier that day, into a Sam Adams pint glass.
A: Hazy amber-copper in color. The head is smooth and light beige, about 1 inch thick, and it fades quickly to the sides of the glass, leaving a foamy sheet of spottily-sticky lacing.
S: Citrus and pine, mostly, with some lightly sweet malts behind the hops. The sweetness comes out a little more after warming a bit. Interestingly, it seems like I can smell the alcohol, even tho there isn't that much in this beer...
T: At first, the citrusy and piney hops really dominate, with only a slight, soft malt flavor. This leads into a slightly bigger spice and sugar presence in the middle, with the citrus still carrying thru to the finish. The aftertaste lets the maltiness grow, producing some roasted sugary flavors that borders on being kinda creamy.
M: Kinda soft and almost smooth in the middle, but slightly watery and alcoholy in the finish. Overall, a little too drying for my mouth, but still not bad.
D: Good. Thoroughly enjoyed downing this growler. Will have this again sometime for sure.
Overall, a pretty solid IPA. The hop tastes, and particularly the feeling they produce, are not exactly what I've had in IPAs that really wowed me, but this is definitely a nice tasting, all-around good brew.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice cloudy deep amberish color, with a nich fluffy head. In the aroma citrus hops and a bit earthy. It has the huge citrus hop taste and a small amount of sweet malts. Lighter body than expected, but it goes together very well. The little brewery that could, good job Scott!

Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 1/2 pint served by Scott Smith during a visit on the way to Dark Lord Day.

A: The IPA pours a cloudy amber orange color with a small patch of head that does not retain for long.

S: The nose is heavily weighted towards the biscuity malt body, nearly foresaking the hops. Only near the end do the hops emerge, showcasing a citrusy body.

T: The taste begins with a routine malty body, somewhat biscuity but not very dry. As the maltiness slides away, a bitter hop presence emerges. That body is grapefruity with some tangerine/apricot flavors rest nicely on top of the malts.

M: The mouthfeel weighs in more on the malt side, presenting a relatively mild IPA that is not afraid to show its hoppy head.

D: A good drink, I'd like to see some more floral hops emerge throughout the drink. It is pretty darn good the way it is though.

Photo of DrJay
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very hazy, deep orange with a cap of off-white foam. Good head retention with plenty of lacing. The aroma was all hops - citrusy, grapefruit, and earthy. Solid bitterness with grapefruit and light pine flavours. Soft malt sweetness that's a bit toasty. Medium bodied, with lowish carbonation. Mild texture. An easy drinking IPA, lots of hops without being way out of balance.

Photo of Phatz
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up the growler form Capone's in Norristown on Wednesday and had it in the fridge until Sunday when I had the opportunity to share it with akorsak, bookert & phnphilly. We did finish the line up of growlers so am drinking some more tonight but my review is from last nights notes with some reminders by the pint in front of me.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy golden amber color with little head and a whit collar and light lacing.

Smell: Hoppy but not terribly bold. I can smell the doughy sweetness and the grapefruit through my cold.

Taste: Fruity sweet with a solid doughy malt backbone and pleasant hop bitterness. As much as it is bold in citrus and floral hops this a solid representation on an American IPA without going over the top. Well done East End Brewing.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, sticky pine sap oily feel, light in carbonation and with adequate bitterness.

Drinkability: This is a sessionable IPA with out a doubt. Sometimes we are dazzled by the monsters and forget that a beer like East End Brewing's Big Hop IPA has a time and place as well.

Hope this is helpful.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Capone's. Thanks to Matt for bringing this beer to our side of the state.
A - Arrives very cloudy. I cannot see clearly through the glass. Cloudy amber yellow with a finger of white foam.
S - Fruity, citrusy, grapefruit peel, flowery hops.
T - Grapefruit, slightly peppery, lots of hop flavor. Nice malt presence towards the finish.
M - Chewy and dense. Are those hop particles that make it so cloudy? If so, it's evident in the mouthfeel.
D - A well done IPA. I can session this no prob.

Photo of weeare138
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Capone's...
Appears a hazy orange toned amber with a small, off white head that quickly fades out into a bubbly collar. Spotty lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of an Earthy, citrus blast up front with a nice, American hop aroma up front followed by a sugary dough sweetness. The hops are bold in this one. It reminds me of sticking my face over a hop boil and inhaling all the wonderful aromas.
Taste is of hop blasted citrus, pine, and floral goodness, along with some doughy, yeasty bread that's been dusted with sugar.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, low-medium CO2, and highlighted with bitter citrusy grapefruit.

Photo of Imstillthegman
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My glass was filled with a cloudy golden amber colored liquid with a thin head of off-white bubbles. It appeared to have been given a rough poor and there was barely any room for the head to remain in the glass...no fault of the beer, however.

The smell was dominated by citrus hops...like a good IPA should.

Taste was all hops as well. Bitter grapefruit throughout with just the slightest hint of malts at the beginning.

Nicely carbonated, medium bodied brew with a lasting dry, bitter aftertaste. This was my first East End beer and I was not disappointed. I picked up a bottle of this to bring home to compare later.

Photo of brentk56
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a very cloudy amber color and a modest head that leaves a nice web of lacing

Smell: Fruity, citrus aroma that bends to the grapefruit

Taste: Brief biscuity opening followed by blast of bitter grapefruit fruitiness; after the swallow, the bitter flavors dominate although the malt retains a maintains a modest presence through the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Very nice, everyday IPA; East End beers remind you that you can get a lot of flavor without going into the high ABV territory

Photo of jhicks12
4.32/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Beer is a great IPA. Not too bitter. nice balance. Beer poured a little flat from the growler but if you get a change to get it straight from the brewery its perfect.

A: Nice brown color and tan foamy head

S: very nice flowery hop aroma and malt backing

T: very balance and for me leaves nice flowery hop taste.

M: Nice carbonation and mouthfeel

D: very drinkable IPA with great balance flavor

Photo of addmorehops
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I've been lucky to find this twice since moving to Pittsburgh. Having done so, I'm ready to join ranks with the brewer and anyone who wants to help get this into a bottle.

Big on hops and big on flavor, a true delight. Being a hop head, I would call this quasi-balanced, bold session beer. Last time I had one, I followed it with a Bells 2H. Big mistake. BH had my pallette so energized and stimulated with flavor that the B2H paled in comparison.

If you see this one and you like hopcraft, try it!

Photo of foureyedgeek
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

growler to pint glass.

This review is a tad unfair, after having had the Big Hop super fresh at the brewery last night for the open house.

On draft, it had a huge creamy tan head, but the pour here at home, from the growler makes in seem a little flat. A more robust pour leaves me with a decent finger or so of head that fades rather quickly to a cap of foam and bubbles.

Smells of hops, mainly of the fruity, citrus variety but also a little spicy and floral.

Malts at first in the mouth, though they quickly succumb to the brute force of the hops. Piney to the taste buds and balanced enough. In the mouth, the hops are quite bitter and almost a tad metallic.

Mouthfeel is about right but a little low in the carbonation department. I must have bad luck with growlers, pretty hit or miss. Even though this was filled to the cap, it still seems flat. Its not a problem with the growler itself as its successfully carried home the Harvest and Witte. Not sure what to think.

This is a very drinkable beer, and sessionable, although I think I'll be pretty toasty if I finish the growler too soon, I'll nurse it all afternoon-evening-night, for certain.

I love East End and what Scott is doing, but this review is not doing them justice. I'll re-review it when I get again, because I'm not sure everything is right with the world (ok, just the beer) this time.

Photo of jcdiflorio
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into 22oz.pilsner glass.A very thick,slightly off-white head. Has reddish-orangey a mirky look.Very, cloudy,haziey,unfiltered look,can just barely see light through it.Very piney,citrusy aroma.A very piney,grapefruity taste.More on the hoppy side,not a malty as you would assume from the smell. A tangy mouthfeel,very chewey. Very drinkable for a beer of this style.This is a hop lovers brew,I thought it was refreshing,tasty,amazing how much of this beer I could drink. I really enjoyed this beer

Photo of beerphan
4.43/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

growler -> pint glass
keg was tapped about 15 minutes before the pour to the growler and it was about 15 minutes before it hit my pint.

Arrived a deep orange amber, with the FRESH hops added to the growler adding an amazing touch. Gotta love to hear the 'plop' of a fresh hop. Poured with a nice quality fluffy lasting head that balanced the hops on a sudsy pillow. Waves of lace lined the glass throughout. Carbonation appeared minimal.

Smell of overwhelming hops. The fresh hops in the glass really completely overpower the nose with a grassy earthy smell.

Taste: Hops are all over this brew. From the first taste to the lasting refreshing bitter end. The fresh hops add an extra special earthy grassy flavor, that explodes as you reach the bottom of the pint. A nice full malt blast presents itself but only for a peek. Excellent with or without the fresh hops added.

Mouthfeel on bighop has sometimes let me down, but this fresh draw has a full natural feel.

This beer can be drank and drank. Just watch out, cause i always think the abv is higher than 5.8.

Note: the fresh hops are a once a year perk around harvest time, i am looking forward to the BigHopHarvestAle next month!!

Photo of psinderson
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler filled fresh at the brewery with FRESH whole hops added to the growler!

Appearance: Dark golden, thick white head with awesome staying power and lacing. Somewhat cloudy.

Smell: Luscious hop aroma. I'm sure the fresh hops added some to this, but I've had this beer before and it has always produced a great citrus aroma.

Taste: Hops, hops, hops. A hopheads' dream beer! There was a hint of malt in the background, but the keynote here is a good, satisfying hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Great medium to thick mouthfeel with a clean finish thanks to the hops.

Drinkability: Well, I had a few with no problems. However, this may be too much for some.

I am so glad to have an up-and-coming craft brewery right around the corner. This is their flagship brew and I can see why. I Found this to be a good representation of the style.

Photo of watermelonman
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This arrived as a nice thick yellow and orange with a medium head. It's leaving a good amount of lace too.

The smell is full of hops. Pine and grapefruit come through strong on top of a nice malt base. The taste is solid and brings more of these flavors through. The mouthfeel is slightly thin while drinkability is good.

Photo of Illinick
3.42/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got straight from the kettle at the brewery!
A: Burnt copper orange in color. Very similar to iced tea or cider in color. No head whatsoever, even after rigorous pour.
S: Floral and citrus rind hop smells dominate the nose. Grassiness and slight sweet bread in there too.
T: Citrus rind, grapefruit and tart lemon pulp with grassy and hop oil flavors. The floral scents peek through in flavor, but are subdued by the bitter citrus pulp flavors. Slight sweet bread near the end and a puckering bitterness that I like.
MF: Light MF with a bitter end
Overall: A good IPA with nice flavor profile. Seems to be lacking in a few areas, but a solid stab.

Photo of rabsten
4.32/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a growler straight from the tank in the Brewery. Nice.

Poured into a pint glass, honey amber. My growler is a bit flat, but the gererous sample I got at the brewery has a tan head and laced nicely.

Floral hop aroma over moderate malt. What I look for in an IPA.

Tasty, floral hops lead over a crisp malt. Well balanced.

Nice, round feeling opening with a sublte crispness towards the end.

Good drinkability. Goes down easily on this monstrously hot day.

Well worth a try. My favorite of the 'Burhg brewed products.

Photo of Dogbrick
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cask version at Barley’s 4th Annual Mini RAF (05/13/06): Hazy dark gold color with a medium ivory-colored head that dissipates slowly. Thin lacing. The aroma is floral hops and some malt. Medium-bodied with a good bitter character. Citrus, floral hops and malt flavors are pretty well-balanced. The finish is clean and citrusy with a lingering hops aftertaste. Pretty good.

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Big Hop IPA from East End Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 215 ratings.