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IPA - Santa Cruz Ale Works

Not Rated.
IPAIPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

62 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 62
Reviews: 35
rAvg: 3.27
pDev: 14.98%
Wants: 0
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Santa Cruz Ale Works visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: illidurit on 02-28-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 62 | Reviews: 35
Photo of Shwa15
4.33/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Local brew, friends with the brewers

Photo of CJNAPS
2.6/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

This tasted really weird to me, it had that chemical taste.

Photo of Philousa
3.7/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Imbibed on tap at Rose & Crown on 3/30/2012.

Poured a clear copper, a little pale for the style. Not much head, but it had to to with the pour more than anything else. Aroma hits with hops first, which are very tree bark-ish. It's weird to describe, don't judge me. Hops could also be described as resinous, fresh. Some biscuity malt lies beneath the hop aroma. Taste is very toasty, buiscuity malt to start, followed by very bitter hops. Somewhat floral, they aren't really going for 'in your face' bitterness. Nice to taste some hop complexity not in the aroma. That said, lingering hop bitterness is significant. balanced, drinkable, dry finish.

I'd like this again. Seems like a good stand by IPA. With all the IPAs I've had, you just have to not screw up and I'll like it. By that I think I mean use cascade hops a lot. I'd really like to try something that isn't going for the West Coast IPA style. If things keep going this way, the IPA market is going to be saturated with homogeneity. Not to put this one down, it's good, just a thought I had.

Photo of TheBrewo
3.88/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

We pop the top and pour a reddish, honey-colored brew with a massive four finger head. This is fluffy, cream-colored, and shows monstrous retention. The liquid has an opaque cloudiness, but no sediment is noted. Carbonation appears normal. As we sniff, we immediately notice a rich and earthy hop-quality, with both piney and floral notes. Additionally there is a warm rich spicy quality to the nose, almost of cloves, but not quite. Alcohol is noted, but is not overpowering, and we get a nice faint hint of toastiness to the malt bill. As we sip, the earthiness of the hops is apparent right up front. These present with both a dirty herbal vibe, and a crisp pine flavoring. Here, too, we begin to see a bit of the toasty malt profile, which brings us to the middle of the sip with a nice warmth. This warmth is further exacerbated by clovey phenols and warming, peppery alcohol. The end of the taste brings us back to some of the earthy qualities from the beginning of the taste. More herbal hops enter, bringing a dryness to the palate, and a nice muskiness to the finish. The aftertaste breathes with even more hops, but here they appear citric, and more warming peppery alcohol. The beer has a medium body, and carbonation, with nice slurp from the foamy head. It is particularly drying, which helps to bring out all the earthy and herbal qualities this beer possesses. The abv is appropriate and the beer is greatly refreshing and easily drinkable.

Overall, our favorite thing about this brew is how the earthy qualities of the hops combine with the warmth of the clove and alcohol. As the beer tasting went on, and with warmth, the hop profile seemed to shift from a dirty, earthy, floral, piney quality, to one of a softer and sweet citric air. This made for an extraordinarily refreshing brew and, when combined with the creamy feel, made this a unique IPA with some great, balanced flavors to back it all up.

Photo of Billolick
3.88/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bomber bottle with out any freshness indication.

Pours lightly hazed lighter almond amber. Loose and puffy off white head, leaving some fine bits of lace and low sheeting.

Mild grapefruit infused hoppy nose.

Decent hop crunch, with fresh tasting cascades, and tasty grapefruit notes shining through. Dry and biting in a hoppy good way. Worthy IPA.Suprised by the low numbers for this one, maybe I got a freshie bottle, close to the source...either way I enjoyed this one as a better then respectable example of a west coast IPA

Photo of Gobzilla
3.13/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: poured a golden orange in color with yellow highlights with a thin head but left some good frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: had some nice citrusy aroma upfront on the nose with hoppy and candi sugar character. it have good malty sweetness though more than anything.

T the malty sweetness was more apparent on the taste with hoppy, candi sugar, and citrusy notes.

M: the brew was medium in body with a with s fair amount of carbonation which had a sweet, malty mild hoppy, citrusy, slight bitter finish.

D: drank really good but was not as hoppy as other west coast IPA's and was let down on the bitterness factor. Overall it was just an average brew.

Photo of t420o
2.33/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A- The beer pours a golden-orange color with a large white head that lasts and leaves little lacing

S- Bitter hops, sweet cereal, citrus, sweet malt. Not too much going on in the smell, hopefully the taste is better

T- Nope, taste is no better than the smell. This is a very underwhelming IPA. Taste is just bitterness with slight pine and cereal grains taste. There are hints of citrus and burnt sugar

M- way too overcarbonated and light. Poor mouthfeel.

O- This is not a very good IPA. It's drinkable but for a style that I love, this was a complete miss. This is the first beer I have had from Santa Cruz Ale Works, and I will say that it may be my last. It may be alright on a very hot day, but thats about it.

Photo of womencantsail
3.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From old notes.

A: The beer pours orange in color with a huge white head on it, far too much, in fact.

S: Smells alright at first. Some good citrus notes up front, but other than that, the nose is pretty "meh". Fairly malty with lots of bready malts and some toasted notes as well.

T: The flavor is similarly bready and mild to moderate in terms of the sweetness. Some citrus notes of grapefruit and oranges, and a decent amount of bitterness.

M: Medium in body with a moderate carbonation.

O: Unfortunately, this beer is just decent at best. Not really what you look for in a west coast IPA.

Photo of Deuane
3.46/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Hazy burnt orange copper with a large, rocky, off white head that slowly reduced to a thin cap and left copious amount of sticky lace.

S-Light spicy orange with toasted biscuit notes and a touch of fresh bread. Rather ho hum for a west coast IPA.

T-Quite similar to the aroma profile with a decent smack of spicy citrus up front with a supporting underlying base of toasted biscuit malt.

M-Medium bodied and rather sharp with a crisp carbonation level and good lingering spicy hop bite.

D-This stuff is solid and certainly better than average stuff but in the HIGHLY competitive market of California IPA's this one would be an afterthought. Sure, I would drink another if offered but I couldn't be bothered to seek it out again.

Photo of philbertk
2.36/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Santa Cruz Ale Works--I.P.A. India Pale Ale--2010 22 oz. Bottle. 6.50% ABV. 65 IBU's? (3.5 / 5.0) Fizzy lacy big white mild lace head. Clear thin bright pretty light gold color. Sediment dusting hazes orange. CO2 enhanced aromatic mild floral hop front. Thin fizzy dry sweet light caramel pine citrus hop resin crisp tangy body. Aged citrus hop spice crisp end. Sampled 6/13/2010. 2 @ $2.95 Each. Bad Bottling.

Photo of Reagan1984
2.97/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Nanoslug for including this in a recent trade.

The head was quite aggressive here. Took me close to 5 minutes to pour a glass. The head is like whipped egg whites. Cloudy light amber color. Some clumps of lacing

Aroma is of toasted malt with a whiff of yeast.

Flavor is much like the aroma. It has that distinctive "homebrew" flavor with some phenolic notes. Lots of yeast and the biscuity malt flavor. A touch of grapefruit but not the standard west coast IPA punch.

Smooth mouth feel with an almost creamy feel. Very slight carbonation.

The yeast taking a main roll in the flavor knocked down the drinkability for me. I am happy to have had the opportunity to try this, but it won't hit a highlight reel of my favorite IPA's

Photo of portia99
3.95/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle received as an extra in a trade with nanoslug. Thanks! Poured into a Dogfish Head signature glass.

A - Pours a pale translucent orange color...plenty hazy and yeasty. A very thick whipped creamy off white head with good staying power...never seems to die and leaves tons of sticky, sticky lacing left on the glass.

S - Thick with hops...rich and citrusy - tons of lemons and grapefruit in the nose, a touch of mint andorange. Some sugary sweetness with a fair amount of bread dough - very yeasty overall...a bit spicy.

T - Follows the aroma quite closely. Sharply bitter. Good citrus notes - mainly grapefruit and oranges. Very yeasty, spicy, a bit of cloves and mintyness. Some breadiness in the malt. A touch of sweetness in there too.

M - Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side. Carbonation is medium to high. Lots of sticky, resiny hops coat the mouth.

D - Very yeasty and full flavored with good fruitiness and nicely bitter. Alcohol level isn't noticeable. Never heard of this beer but glad to have a chance to try this one.

Photo of Reidrover
2.92/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber from Roth's Vista Market Salem OR. Clear slighly burnt golden coloured ale, as a huge rocky off white head. Aroma is mainlly of grapefruit like hopping,sweet and slightly spicy. Taste is a bit of a let down, its mainlly sweet a sort of artificial sweetner type sweet, there are hops but they are buried for an instant under the sweetness,the hops do emerge near the end. Watery palate..but the aftertaste is OK. Overall dissapointing IPA, coulda been way better.

Photo of yesyouam
3.57/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Santa Cruz Ale Works IPA is a clear, golden ale with a small, off white head. It has an aroma of pine resin. It's light bodied and crisp with a slightly gritty finish. It's a resiny flavor that's well balanced. The aftertaste is long and resiny. It's a simple and tasty beer.

Photo of bulletrain76
2.76/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle. Orange with a big, sticky head. Fresh piney and grapefruity hops in the aroma. Nice malt base in the flavor, with good juicy citric hops, but pretty tame for an IPA, especially compared to their pale ale. I think that one might even have a more bitter flavor, but this is a drinkable and flavorful IPA regardless. Crisp, medium body. Rerate: 22oz bottle and draught. After a couple more times having this since the initial case that I had from the brewery last year, I have to say that it certainly hasn't gotten any better, and tastes like all bittering hops and husky malt. Aroma hops are just not cutting it for an IPA, and the IBUs could stand to be reduced by a good amount to balance this out.

Photo of ffejherb
3.33/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bomber shared with FooFaa, Slatetank, tenderbranson69 and brewslut on 8/15/09.

A - Poured a hazy amber/orange body with about a finger's worth of creamy off-white head that settled into a thin ring of retention and deposited some spotty lace around the glass.

S - Citrusy hop presence suggesting orange rind, as well as some subtle peppery spice. Malt is sweet and caramel-based.

T - Citrusy hops with a hint of spice and lots of caramel malt sweetness. Bitterness opens up a bit in the backend with a lemon/orange rind character that is a bit metallic.

M - Medium bodied with a syrupy texture and moderate carbonation on the palate. Pretty metallic bitter finish with a lingering hop bite on the tongue.

D - Average IPA with a decent hop character, but ultimately a little muddled and unbalanced overall.

Photo of Slatetank
3.53/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

thanks to ffejherb for sharing this IPA, enjoyed alongside FooFaa, brewslut, tenderbranson69. Poured chilled into a pint.

A - A bright copper appearance w/ frothy creamy head from vigorous pour. The bead is of average size and the clarity is good

S - A mild citrus note w/ hints of fruity esters. The nose is mild w/ a light toasted malt scent

M - Crisp and medium bodied w/ a gentle acidity and mild astringency level w/ a dry resinous finish

T - A fleshy orange taste w/ rind notes thrown in.. The flavor has an interesting cinnamon accent in the spicy and bitter layers. There is gentle lemony grapefruit taste w/ elements of ginger in the finish

D - A quaffable Ipa, no more no less, very satisfying without blowing my mind. I consider this worth a try for a standard west coast IPA.

Photo of 1759Girl
2.78/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearance> Cloudy yellow, medium liveliness. Big white head which dissipates slowly. Looks about right for an American IPA.

Smell> Deliciously hoppy... we're on to a good thing here.

Taste> A little too bitter. Then hang is a dirty resin hang, not a crisp one. Not balanced at all. My notes have the word "biley" but that could be just a bad read of my poor handwriting.

Mouf> Nothing special, yet not bad.

Drinkability> Yeah. Not so much.

Photo of jackorain
3.5/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was poured from the bottle into to balloon burgundy glasses to share with my wife. There was quite a lot of yeast in the bottle of this one, so much so that I needed to leave about 3/8 inch in the bottle to avoid pouring into my glass.

Poured a very cloudy orange. The white head hung around quite a while and fell to a nice lace and tall collar.

Aroma is light with just a touch of orange and sweet caramel.

Grapefruit and pine hops, brash bitterness. The middle brings grapefruit juice. Late middle introduces a bit of sweetness to the picture. The finish is grapefruit rind and pithy bitterness.

The body is a little lighter than expected, even a little watery at times. The carbonation is zingy with a very small bubble and mouth tingle.

I could have a few of these I suppose. Tt is a bit one dimenstional, mostly grapefruit.

Photo of miramanmike
3.98/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Light copper strawish color 1/4 inch fading head good lacing.
S: Big hoppy smell not too floral.
T: great taste, way hoppy like I like it. not too malty. perfect
M: Good carbonation light and refreshing
D: With an alc. content of 6.5% and the wonderful taste and smell I can drink the heck out of this stuff.
Somebody got it right!

Photo of hopdog
3.33/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle acquired in trade with WeeHeavySD (thanks!).

Poured a medum golden color with a large sized whtie head. Aromas of floral hops, some citus, and a little spicy. Tastes of citrus, the same floralness, and a little bready.

Notes from and tasted on: 4/10/09

Photo of flexabull
3.62/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New arrival at a local liquor store, thought I'd give it a try.

Pours a bright yellow / gold color with lots of bubbles, and a thick white head.

Smells nice, good hop notes. Pine, resin, and some hard candies.

Taste is a little dry, with very hop forward flavors. Resiny, thick, oily, pine like, with a little bit of citrus. There is a little malt creamy sweetness, and a decent bitter mineral hop finish.

Mouthfeel is not bad, feels pretty thick and full at first, but the finish thins out a bit.

Drinkability is pretty good. It's a solid IPA, a little bit pedestrian, but it is definitely drinkable and worth trying. It didn't wow me, but I wasn't upset that I bought this one either.

Photo of xhcadamx
2.95/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - Clear yellow/orange with a soft white head. Head settled but stayed afloat. Little lacing.

S - Lots of hops. Grapefruit is up front and pretty much dominates.

T - The smell had me thinking that this was going to be a tasty IPA. This is not the case. This is extemely bitter and lacks balance.

M - Bottle conditioned so a very smooth mouthfeel. Thin bodied.

D - Probably not again.

Photo of popery
3.16/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer is quite close to getting a full point higher across the spectrum of taste, feel and drinkability but for one flaw. The hops smell great but lack flavor to a degree. They're there and they're bitter but they do not have the wonderful perfume of the nose. On the nose, the hops are floral and delicately citric. This comes through a bit in the flavor, but there is too much bland bitterness for a higher score. It's almost astringent in feel. I certainly wouldn't mind trying it fresh on tap at a local bar, but as is, it is has a subpar flavor in a supremely competitive category. The beer also does not catch the eye. It's a clear lackluster yellow gold with good lacing and a nice head. Something just doesn't work for me about the color. I'm completely nitpicking but I keep looking at it and mentally comparing it to really good ipas. My girlfriend is having a Pliny now. I'm staying away from that marvelous smell and flavor, so as not to taint my tasting but it just looks much, much better somehow. At any rate, I think that Santa Cruz probably has some talented brewers. They just need to tweak this recipe a touch and bring out more richness from the hops. They can feel free to drive up from Santa Cruz to prove me wrong with a fresh keg.
(Sidenote: My girlfriend's post-Pliny notes were paint and menthol. Sorry, I just enjoy her blunt, creative descriptions.)

Photo of magictrokini
3.22/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Much better than the hefe. Pours clear amber with a medium white head and good lacing. Clean, fresh grassy aroma with pink grapefruit and pine. Nice balance of caramel malt and the grapefruit, lemon, and orange flavor hops without being sweet and sticky. There is some soap and earthy/grass hop tastes from time to time, but overall and nice IPA.

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IPA from Santa Cruz Ale Works
76 out of 100 based on 62 ratings.