Ballistic IPA - Ale Asylum

Not Rated.
Ballistic IPABallistic IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

262 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 262
Reviews: 82
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 10.66%
Wants: 34
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ale Asylum visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rockwell on 03-07-2009

Ballistic IPA is a fully loaded American-style IPA. The use of American Amarillo hops give it explosive citrus aromas and aggressive bitterness with a smooth finish.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 262 | Reviews: 82
Photo of soze47
3.6/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark brown with some orange tones, a little frothy.

Aroma: Sweet and a bit musty, unctuous and floral hops. I'm not getting as much citrus on this as other reviewers, but it is still quite nice.

Taste: Floral and bright off the bat, then a nice rush of malt sweetness kicks in second. A pretty grassy bite kicks in on the linger that I like a lot.

Mouthfeel: This one is slick. Definitely on the heavy side of medium bodied, this guy goes down very easy. It allows for a quick drink.

Overall: I like this beer quite a bit. I love that Ale Asylum is getting such wide play in Madison. They are getting market saturation, meaning that almost any bar carries them. This IPA would be a great brew to turn to anytime it is offered up.

Photo of mobius387
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a founders pint glass

appearance: a golden honey colored, almost completely opaque which is pretty unusual for an ipa, 1" white foamy head

aroma: nice nose, typical pines and citrus

palate: fairly smooth for an ipa, lacks a bit of the classic kick, medium to full body tho, which makes it feel like a big beer

taste: a little light on flavor and no strong hop base to it, but the flavor it has tastes good. i get mostly grapefruit and some hints of pine

overall: a very nice IPA in a state that lacks quality in this category. i am new to this brew, and i really like it. one of my favorite ipas from this state. right up there with snake hollow, hop hearty and the rest of them. definitely a pick up if its in your area and you like ipas!

Photo of BoitSansSoif
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Slightly hazy honey-amber w/nice off-white head. Terrific retention and beautiful lacing.

S-Pine, floral, and citrus hops dominate w/notes of grapefruit, tangerine and orange rind. A nice under-layer of toasted malt offers some balance.

T-Bitter from the start with the hops taking over, but opening up midway to the slightly sweet malty backbone and orange/tangerine. The finish features pine resin and grapefruit, with hop oils carrying over into the aftertaste and retaining the grapefruit character.

M-Excellent mouthfeel with medium body, dominant hops, and enough malt to hold its own. Moderate carbonation level is perfect. Result is an in-your-face IPA that's still highly drinkable.

D-Highly quaffable. I'll be looking for it in bottles.

Photo of Axic10
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle rec'd as an extra from ROBORB. Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy copper/orange color with minimal head.

Smell: Hoppy nose with grapefruit and mango hints. Followed by a nicely balanced sugary malt nose.

Taste: Grapefruit, passion fruit, sweet malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and really smooth (i.e. goes down way too fast).

Drinkability: Definitely would drink more of this if readily available near me. A nice surprise for sure.

Photo of TheBungyo
3.49/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy orange with minimal head.

Nose: This one is a bit odd. At first I get lots of sweet malt but after some time I smell an odd chlorophyll smell ... it's almost like smelling grass stains on the knees of your jeans if you played on the lawn as a kid. There's also some pollen but no pine, grapefruit, or citrus like you find in so many great IPA's.

Taste: Yeah pretty nice despite the sweetness. The hop profile is very good but there's so much malt that in the finish it seems to have the malt of a double IPA and the hops of only a single. Maybe I'm biased due to the stellar IPA's here out west. I'd love to give this a more glowing review since I grew up in their hood but the malt is just too dominant.

Mouth: Pretty much spot on for the style. Maybe a bit rich for the style but I honestly like it. Well done.

Drink: This is good but I wont hurry back to it. Pretty good but not up to the standards of the upper echelon.

Photo of chocosushi
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Second beer in a tasting

12oz -> PBR Glass

A ~ Copper Amber. Hazy, with Medium bubbles. Lacing's good.

S ~ Burnt grapefruit and Treesap

T ~ Wood, Biscuits, Sugared grapefruit, Candied lemon. Dry hops mostly. Bit of spice. Kinda malty.

M ~ Kinda thin. Pretty good.

D ~ Overall this isn't my style of IPA but it definitely is solid for what it is. ABV is decently hidden.

Thanks to Corey (MC) for this extra

Photo of Wisconsinality
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into SA perfect pint.

A- Pours a murky deep copper with a two finger head. The head leaves a nice cap on the beer and some great lacing all the way down the side of the glass.

S- Some piney hops and a little bit of citrus in there as well. A small amount of malt and a good biscuit backbone.

T- A big dose of piney hops and a little bit of sweetness. The malt is barely present and is overshadowed by a lingering biscuit presence. Also a little bit of caramel in there as well.

M- Medium bodied that is a touch thick. Bitter on the tongue but gets smoother the more drinks I take. Almost creamy.

D- Reminds me more of a double than anything. I could have more than one of these and not have my palate busted.

Photo of Onslow
3.69/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

big resin and earthy floralness in the 2 holed face triangle .. . dark dark tan, the bill-dozer.. . really tough foam .. . but when you smell the goaline, they're only words; just words .. . quite sweet, light hoppy mouth .. pretty slick but lucks an assertiveness like ricky suggs .. . i really enjoyed this brew, for the hop sniffers and a nice sessionable ipa that scores a touchdown and gets carried in for the 2 point conversion and then lets the other team score a consolation touchdown and then stammers incoherently ...

Photo of nickapalooza86
4.92/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Notes Jan 15 2012

Pours a hazy amber, looks very nice in the glass.

Smells of armerreto, faint tropical fruit, and a little pine.

Taste is bitter grapefruit up front, earthy, bready malt backbone, ends on more bitter grapefruit dryness.

Mouthfeel is a bit creamy for me.

A decent IPA, just not my favorite. If you like Armarillo hops then this is you IPA. But I found it to be a bit different and odd.

Re-review - Feb 2013

I have had to change my review because having re visited I have discovered that I love this beer, Fresh Citrus just burst from every sip, the smell and taste are so fresh. It finishes remarkabely clean with not an off flavor in sight!

Photo of bound4er
4.43/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A. Frothy, huge off white head that ever so slowly fades to a well covered skim. Underneath is a dark amber, slightly cloudy liquid that leaves gobs of lacing. This looks more like a DIPA than an IPA.
S. Wow - citrus/lemon, pungent forest floor, pine - no doubt about it, this is loaded with hops.
T. I can see where the initial taste of this beer may set some people back - the hop profile is slightly pungent. A few sips later, this beer just starts to grow on me - lemon and pine hop flavors are balanced with bready malts.
M. Medium bodied, somewhat oily feel and nicely carbonated. Just the way I like an IPA.
D. I could drink one after another - the hops are so nicely balanced with malt that I just don't tire drinking this stuff. Another winner from Ale Asylum and something to keep around, especially with warmer weather just around the corner.

Photo of swizzlenuts
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer is poured a deep copper with a nice dense thick head. It's slightly off white. It's decently clear as well. The nose is a huge surprise. Tons of malty goodness that is very reminiscent of toast. There is a lot a hint of caramel, but no hops, which is a disappointment. The flavour is very hoppy though, I'm surprised it didn't come through in the nose. It's combination of hops and maltiness are quite unique. A bready/toasty flavour mixed with citrus/spice is quite refreshing. The mouthfeel is slightly watery which makes the beer pretty damn drinkable.

The more I sip on the beer the more the citrus/spicy hops come through, but the breadiness is still slightly there giving the beer a unique flavour for an IPA. I usually expect my IPAs to be much more hoppy, but this is still tasty.

Photo of hawks10
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle with NO DATE - Poured into a pint glass...

Pours a reddish dark copper, just a touch of haze with two fingers of cream colored head, lots of lacing left behind. Almost looks more like a DIPA...

Citrus and fruit hop aromas stand out in this one. They are significantly tempered by an abundance of toffee malt however. I remember this one having a more intense citrus blast last time I enjoyed it, is this because it should be fresher?! PLEASE DATE YOUR IPAS!!!

Piny, earthy bitter hops give this beer a bitter bite right off the bat. A bunch of caramel/sweet malt cuts the bitterness a bit, but this is pretty one sided throughout. The bitterness returns and lingers long past the finish, drying out your mouth. Not bad, but again, I remember this being better, skewed memories, or is this beer not fresh?? PLEASE DATE YOUR BEERS!!

Full bodied, this one drinks more like a DIPA. Resinous, bitter and drying. Malt cuts the bitterness a bit, but adds tons of body. Lower carbonation makes this one stick on your palette and linger...

Why can't breweries date their bottles? Have had this fresh on tap at the source multiple times, and have purchased six packs from the brewery where they could guarantee its freshness, but I have hesitated to buy this beer many times in stores because there is no date.

Ale Asylum, you are losing money from me, start dating!

Drinkability score suffers for this...

Photo of zoolzoo
3.03/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Never heard of Ale Asylum before. Thanks to greatfulbeerhead for a chance to try this.

A: Hazy for an IPA, lots of tiny little floaties. Mahogany core, gets lighter around the outside of the glass. Looks a bit like dirty water. Big three finger head as a result of an aggressive pour into a pint glass.

S: Hop presence is not far detached from the malt, nothing really jumps out at me. Aroma falls a bit flat.

T: Tastes pretty good, a bit muddled. The hops do not have many "bright" characteristics, not much bite. Piney, bitter, and a bit of citrus fall right in with caramel malt, which makes itself well known. Definitely some sweetness going on here. A tinge of alcohol on the finish, nothing boozy.

M: Has a body that rivals some DIPA's, carbonation is somewhat low. The flavor profile doesn't quite back it up, unfortunately.

D: Ballistic is big in body, but the flavor profile isn't completely palatable for me. Thus, drinkability must suffer.

Photo of Jparker37
3.59/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into an Imperial pint.

A - Hazy light amber color to it. The light tan head was small even from a vigorous pour.

S - Citrus hops right away but with a flowery smell to it. Slight touch of biscuity malt floats in the background.

T - Malt holds up well and is found throughout the whole flavor. Hops come in midway with a prickly piney flavor. Bitterness is mellow and rounded avoiding sharpness. Finishes pretty dry with hops lasting for a short while into the aftertaste.

M - Medium body, medium-light carbonation, semi-dry to dry.

O - The beer has a nice balance between hops and malt for an IPA. Head was a little disappointing. Smell lacked a little bit of pop to it, but a pleasant hoppy flavor to it. I would definitely drink this beer again but not necessarily seek it out.

Photo of AmberMan22
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this on tap at Brickhouse BBQ.

Pours a clear amber color with an ivory head. Good retention, stains the glass with lacing during sipping.

Smell is quite fierce. In-your-face hops, along with pine, grapefruit, a hint of hop spiciness.

Taste is solid, especially because there's a decent pale malt backbone to guide the hop attack. All the aforementioned smells make it to the tongue as well.

Mouthfeel felt confusing...like it wanted to be a heavy bodied, but just couldn't quite do it. Solid medium body (almost a watery heavy-body if that makes any sense).

Another delicious offering from Ale Asylum. Great spring beer.

Photo of Ek0nomik
4.26/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured In: Tulip Glass

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber orange with a finger of head. Lacing towards the top of the glass.

Smell: Caramel malt (a very slightly toasted scent), a little alcohol, and a nice blend of fruits.

Taste: A nice blend of caramel malt and hops. The aftertaste has a nice blend of citrusy tones, including orange, grapefruit, and a little lemon.

Mouthfeel: A medium body, and very well carbonated. This goes down very easy.

Drinkability: Yet another winner from Ale Asylum. I still think the Hopalicious has a better flavor with it being a little more citrusy. Maybe I am just biased because I had the Hopalicious first. Regardless, I am a big Ale Asylum fan, and I like that they have three relatively hoppy beers.

Photo of stouts4me
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

At Ale Asylum new taproom/brewery, served in a pint glass.

Has a real unique nose,real malty/rye nose, not sure.

Taste is slightly sweet,malty, can taste the strength.

Glad I tried it, but not a favorite.

Photo of Dotcubed
3.06/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Yea I fell for the fancy ass graphic arts disco fun label.

Twist off cap? Really? This is really that kind of any time any where beer.

First smell impression is of hop extract smell oozing out of the neck. Some light sediment in the bottle; just as the label has said it's unfiltered. Nice layer of foam & darker color than I expected. Good solid hop smell that is fresh and potent.

Tastes off, like sour green peppers. Vegetal, medicinal bitterness. Grapefruit segment peelings.
Posibly a middle aged bottle.
I wish they put when it was made on the label.
Maybe it would be better at cold refridgerator temps as I let it warm up a bit.

I'd like to try a draft of this in a Madison bar with some spicy indian buffalo wings.

Photo of adman08
3.66/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a cloudy dark amber with a good amount of fluffy off-white head that leaves good lacing on the glass.
S-Slightly grassy aroma along with a fairly strong citrus hop aroma and a slight malt sweetness but overall a fairly light aroma.
T-Strong citrus and herbal hop flavor but not a harsh biting bitterness and not at all overpowering. Good malt balance. The alcohol is there but not very strong.
M-Medium bodied, starts with a slight sweetness and finishes slightly dry. Good carbonation.
Overall, an easy drinking, refreshing IPA. There's a good balance between malt and hops and the citrus hop flavors are pretty tasty. I could go for a stronger hop aroma and there's something about the malt body of the beer that I feel is lacking. The way I'd sum it up is it could use just a hint more of everything, aroma, malt body/flavor and hop flavor but still a good beer.

Photo of Tuey13
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a opaque copper/honey color with an off-white half finger head..

The smell is floral, pineapple, grapefruit, and of course pine. I also get the sweetness from the malts on the nose as well.

The taste follows the nose, citrus and pine... very bitter... but with the sweetness from the malts this is very well balanced. I love that this is not over the top... perfect!

I love how rich and full-bodied this is..Ale Asylum always impresses me with their well crafted beers. I have yet to be disappointed with any of their offerings. A+

Photo of knepper
4.11/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Pours a copper/amber with a pale head that leaves decent lacing along the glass. Hints of orange highlight a slightly hazy body.

Smell: Not gigantic. A bit of grapefruit, tart orange, and toasted sugars. Pineapple and pine round it out.

Taste: Smooth. I like the carbonation level. Alcohol is not evident. Low perceived IBUs compliment a solidly malty backbone which isn't too sweet. Lemon, grapefruit, and fir tips sit atop a fairly dry body that is reminiscent of toasted marshmallow and grilled sourdough.

In comparison to Satisfaction, this one seems a bit drier and a bit more bitter with less aroma and hop flavor (not in a bad way). A bit more drinkable as well due to those attributes.

Photo of brokenleadedcask
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Received SUPER fresh from GbvDave, thanks Dave!! Reviewed from notes.

I had never heard of this brewery until Dave mentioned he was getting some and we were working on a trade anyway, so bonus. Glad he suggested it. The cloudy amber, nice puffy head and super glue lacing were inviting me to savor it's goodness. The aroma punched me between the eyes before I got close, GRAPEFRUIT, ORANGE, HOPS oh my! The fresh hop flavor bounced around in my mouth like a super-ball. Did someone slip a slice of invisible orange in my glass when I wasn't looking? I've had quite a few IPA's, but this one has something special I can't quite put my finger on. Is it the earthy-ness, the hop schedule, or just WI water? The clean finish left no residue or hop bitterness around to just "hang-out". This is a very drinkable IPA, bright flavors and a clean finish make it a winner. I didn't really want to finish it.

Photo of EliteDigger
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at the Ale Asylum the night it was bottled and on tap again last night. Also purchased a couple of six-packs which is what I'm reviewing this from.
A-Beautiful amber-orange transparent color with just the slightest hint of cloudiness. A nice pale cream colored 1" head rises as it's poured. The head lasts a bit and then drops down to a light coating on the surface. Some foam laces the sides of the glass.
S-Is a heavenly mix of citrus, mainly orange with hints of grapefruit. Pine and tropical fruits like mango and light pineapple appear. Smells good!
T-A good zip of citrus zest and pine greet the tongue, then unfortunately I get this super faint hint of mustiness and wet dog. I did't notice it as much on tap and it gets a bit lighter as it warms, but it's still a mild distraction from the rest of the flavors. Some good malt sweetness provides a decent backbone. There's a hint of dryness as the taste fades.
M-Very nice. Not too thick, not too thin with a very pleasant soft carbonation that dances on your tongue.
D-This would be probably closer to a 5 if not for the slight off taste. If it was based off the smell, I could drink this all night...until I passed out that is... ;)
All in all a pretty decent beer from Ale Asylum. One of my favorite places to hang out and I'm glad to see them expanding their beer lines. I look forward to more exciting brews to come!

*Edit-My second six pack has not had the odd taste as much as the first and is much better tasting. May be a bottling thing (which I'm leaning towards, since I didn't get the off flavors on tap or second six pack), but either way it's an inconsistancy that shouldn't be there.

Photo of eyncognito
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber bronze-distinct orange and red highlights with a 1 finger beige head-fades into a thick collar that leaves spotty lacing. Aroma is pure amarillo, a hop that in the past I've been less than satisfied with, but lately between this all amarillo IPA and new glarus' crack'd wheat, I've becoming fast friends with this fickle hop. Wonderful citrus notes: orange and tangerine, lime and lemon zest with hints of Rose's lime juice, maybe a little grapefruit, notes of dank weed, brown sugary malt is only an after thought-hard to break through all the citrusy goodness. Surprising really for such a malty looking IPA.

Taste is wonderful. Big time citrus: oranges and lemon/lime zest-more on the lime side really, grapefruit asserts itself here more than in the nose, dank grass, even tangerine, soft pine. Malt flavor also asserts itself better than in the nose, caramel, toasty bread, even slightly nutty. Mouthfeel is really on the fence here. Carbonation is soft and pleasant-good for the style. It is medium bodied-a bit of a hermaphrodite, is it an IPA or a DIPA? Hard to say, I'd prefer one or the other really, scale the alcohol/malt back a bit or ramp it up slightly. The bitter dryness (moderately dry) of this is near perfect, balancing the malt sweetness. Incredibly clean bitter finish.

Easily, dangerously drinkable. The day it came out I downed a sixer with ease, only to realize in the morning that 3-4 would suffice. Alcohol is well masked, but does assert itself and is noticeably warming. For a brewery like Ale Asylum who have made such wonderful vehicles for hops-Hopaliscous and Ambergeddon, to have taken this long to produce an IPA was starting to bother me. Here's to hoping that they'll keep tinkering. Ballistic is a wonderful single hop IPA that showcases exactly how good amarillo can be, but could have its malt bill improved slightly (still good in a Midwest fashion) to make it damn near World Class.

Photo of ArchaeoFiero_TheDelorean
4.8/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Although not as near to my heart as Ale Asylum's Hopalicious, this is still one incredible IPA. It's very bitter and citrusy, but with a balanced sweetness that Ale Asylum always seems to get right. And, oh what glorious hops! If you are an IPA lover and can find this one locally, it should be in your rotation.

Ballistic IPA from Ale Asylum
88 out of 100 based on 262 ratings.