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Happy Camper IPA - Santa Fe Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Happy Camper IPAHappy Camper IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

396 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 396
Reviews: 127
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.37%
Wants: 17
Gots: 38 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Santa Fe Brewing Company visit their website
New Mexico, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A classic beer for those beer lovers who love their hops, Happy Camper IPA will take the Pepsi Challenge (or IPA challenge, as we say in New Mexico) against any other pretenders to the throne. Was it divine providence that made this beer the king of the IPA world? Was it a tireless pursuit of glory? No, this IPA has a top-secret recipe to thank for its success, and this meticulously formulated combination of several different hops combined with a very specific brewing process give Happy Camper IPA a spicy, citric, and floral infusion of hop character, which is masterfully counterbalanced with the full-bodied maltiness characteristic of the Santa Fe Brewing Company’s distinctive beers.

(Beer added by: indiapaleale on 08-18-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 396 | Reviews: 127 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of u2carew


4.2/5  rDev +12.3%

12oz can.
A) Pours with a thin head that quickly disapates leaving some big bubbles on top. Slight haze to the body. Copper in color.
S) Bold hop aromatics - pink grapefruit, peach and pleasant floral notes.
T) Sweet caramel hop bit up front. Then the malts take over briefly allowing the hops to come back for another subtle and lingering kick in the finish. Other parts of the taste profile made up with not-quite-ripe pink grapefruit, floral petals, and pine.
M) Smooth. Medium body. Some tannin in the finish.
O) A delicious IPA. I would definitely drink another.

12-08-2011 01:09:22 | More by u2carew
Photo of bobhits


4.2/5  rDev +12.3%

Santa fe IPA

Tipping on the amber orange side of the IPA spectrum, light white head, touch of lacing, and marginal if any bubbles in the body. Good light comes through but not as clear as it can be.

Mild aroma overall, hops and sweet malt, not overly grape fruit notes, not overly floral, just a touch of bitter with sweet caramel notes.

Nearly a perfectly balanced IPA. Hops attack the front of the tongue followed by sweet nearly sugary sweetness. Wonderfully bold flavors here, reminds me in many ways of two hearted ale. Not as hoppy but the blend of flavors comes off very similar.

Thicker than the abv would suggest, well carbonated and a good beer to drink. This isn’t a summer beer by any means, but still pretty good.

Really solid extra IPA and a wonderful extra!

05-28-2011 17:51:15 | More by bobhits
Photo of jlindros


4.18/5  rDev +11.8%

Yay, canned IPAs, great. Thanks to dcloeren for this one.

The gurgling pour from the can into the snifter yields a fluffy creamy looking 1.5 finger head that fades at a med pace with nice thick lacing, over mostly clear honey orange colored beer.

NOse brings plenty of fresh hops, a nice hoppy aroma, fresh citrus and a bit of resin, hint of tropical fruit like a light musty passion fruit and guava almost. A light fluffy malt underneath, a hint of tangerine and light clementine like citrus.

Taste starts with a light fluffy malt with hint of reddish malt like flavor, but quickly brings hops. A light airy aromatic floral hop start, a little grassy, light resins and citrus. A bit of tropical fruit as well, more clementine and hint passion fruit with the musty resin. A decent bitterness that doesn't bite too much but rounds off evenly at first. As it finishes it dries a bit and gets a nice bitter bite, a decent bitter orange rind like flavor with more light resin and hint of pine even.

Mouth is med bodied, fluffy with lots of carbonation.

Overall pretty good actually. This is what base IPAs should be, a bit lighter, very drinkable, nice bitterness that increases with a dry finish, great effervescent hops, light resin and citrus, bit tropical fruit, nothing wrong at all, just a very drinkable IPA, from a can no less!

11-10-2012 03:08:03 | More by jlindros
Photo of superspak


4.15/5  rDev +11%

12 ounce can. Pours slightly cloudy orange amber color with a nice dense 2.5 finger off white head with great retention that reduces to a thick lacing cap that lasts. Some very nice lacing coats the glass as you drink as well. Aromas of orange, grapefruit, pine, caramel, and spice. Nice aromas with good strength, standard IPA stuff here. Taste of orange, grapefruit, pine and caramel. Big sweetness on the front with a decently strong bitterness on the finish that lasts with pine, caramel, and citrus flavor. Medium carbonation and body, very creamy and smooth as well, very drinkable. No alcohol in the taste or finish. Overall an excellent well rounded IPA. I would pick this up if it was readily available, perhaps for some camping?

07-03-2011 20:00:01 | More by superspak
Photo of firkinhophead


4.15/5  rDev +11%

attractive looking can from State Line Liquors in El Paso.

poured into an opaque plastic cup, so can;t comment much on appearance. Nice, creamy head with pretty good lacing.

aroma is piney and floral, with some citrus notes. Some yeasty biscuit in the background.

Full hop flavor on the front, with only a hint of sweetness. Grapefruit dominates, with some pine and dried fruit. Apricot notes, from the malt maybe? Finishes dry and minty.

Medium-bodied and creamy, with a sharp bitterness on the sides of the tongue. Bitterness lingers and borders on astringent, but stays in a good place.

Puckering and refreshing. A nice treat and a no-brainer for camping.

07-15-2011 00:15:49 | More by firkinhophead
Photo of depechemode1983


4.13/5  rDev +10.4%

A - Pours out medium copper in color. The head is off-white with moderate density. Retention is minimal.

S - The nose is mostly sweet with lots of tropical fruits being apparent. You get sweet pineapple and orange, slightly sour apricots coupled with a pleasant hop bitterness all the way through.

T - Bitter, semi sweet tropical fruits. Also....a bit of a toasted coffee quality maybe even a little bread like.

M - Smooth, soft, a little oily/slick. Carbonation in great.

O - Pretty good stuff right here. Only 8.49 a six pack at my local H.E.B. Recommended.

09-11-2012 20:30:01 | More by depechemode1983
Photo of smakawhat


4.09/5  rDev +9.4%

Poured from the can into a Spiegelau IPA glass. No obvious can dating from what I can see.

Great looking brew, crystal clear body with thin and just plentiful but not too much carbonation. Copper orange clarity and glowing like a dark lantern. Head is creamed yellow and four fingers tall, thick capped retention, and big chunky lacing. In short what a great looking IPA should be.

Aroma hints a bit towards dank a bit, a good amount of weedy smoke to go with it also. Small caramel through the smoke giving some nice sweetness hints at smoke caramel. Really dig it, and it's not overpowering either.

Palate comes through a little less surprising. Malted caramel forward a bit, hints of smoken ash and some slight weed grass like flavors. Slightly tinny a bit strangely, hints a little towards a juiced fruit flavor but with no fruit quality strangely. Good solid malt backbone and sweetness match nicely.

An interesting take on an IPA, I dig it quite a bit.

07-07-2014 21:39:48 | More by smakawhat
Photo of emmasdad


4.08/5  rDev +9.1%

Picked up as part of a mixed six pack at Lukas tonight. Poured a medium amber color with a decent off white head. Nice floral/piney hop aroma. On the palate, medium bodied and drinkable, with tons of floral/piney hops, a little lemon and sweet malt. A very nice ipa.

12-15-2010 03:53:21 | More by emmasdad
Photo of Moose90


4.06/5  rDev +8.6%

Can't decipher a freshness date on this one.

A – Translucent medium/dark amber. Thin head that leaves adequate sticky lacing throughout.

S – Lemon, citrus, hops. Some pine here as well.

T – Sweet and malty, maybe a bit past its peak. Bready malts up front lead to a nice drying bitterness on this finish. More citrus, grapefruit and pine.

M – Good carb, very smooth, this is a sessionable IPA. Crisp/dry.

O – Very refreshing IPA, could drink it all day long. Wouldn't call it a lightweight IPA, but it is one that you could drink a lot of. Very smooth and highly drinkable, good bitterness, and good malt balance.

01-29-2013 02:06:36 | More by Moose90
Photo of quindog


4.05/5  rDev +8.3%

This beer is being hyped by the liquor store around the corner from me and the guys working there definitely know their IPAs so I gave it a shot. Oddly, they seem to be the only store in the area that is carrying it right now but maybe it will gain wider distribution soon. I will say right off the bat that this cost $6.30 a sixer, so the price is definitely right.

Poured into a 16 oz Avery strong beer festival glass (2009) with the shape of an imperial pint (one of my favorite standard beer glasses). Pours a light amber color.

Aroma was not quite as pungent as I would have hoped. The beer was lacking good aroma hops. But there was no mistaking this for anything but an IPA. Perhaps I'm looking for different hops than they use for the nose.

Taste was as expected - bitter, with only a little malt to support the bitterness. I would have loved a little more flavor hop presence. This beer saves all of it's hops for the bittering. It wasn't overly bitter, but the lack of flavoring hops left me wanting just a little more. Still, it is a solid brew.

Despite what may seem to be a lackluster review thus far, the beer was very drinkable. I found myself at the bottom of my glass pretty quickly and was reaching for another. Overall I think this beer has potential, but it hasn't been reached yet. It is a well crafted beer, it just needs some more floral hops at the end of the boil and/or some dry hopping. For me, I'd probably prefer some simcoe or amarillo in the mix.

But at $6.30 a six pack, I may just have to pick up another.

02-11-2011 15:23:02 | More by quindog
Photo of 2xHops


4.05/5  rDev +8.3%

The can was poured into a non-standard pint glass, but I gotta work with what I have. The appearance looked very good with a healthy foam rising and dissipating fairly quickly. It had copper color that looked lively.

The taste was the part that surprised me. While the beer has 6.6% ABV, it does not taste as hoppy as I thought it would with alcohol coming through strongly as you will see in other IPAs. I could taste the hops coming alive, but it isn't as coarse.

The mouthfeel is soft and long, and I feel like it's contradiction for an IPA. I had envisioned it to be more strong, but it still has the signature bitter aftertaste that lingers and lingers.

Overall, I'd buy this again. I think it's a good example of an IPA, especially when it comes in cans. It'll be a great addition to anybody's boating trips or even my tubing excursion I'm taking soon.

09-02-2011 03:26:39 | More by 2xHops
Photo of Mweddle


4.04/5  rDev +8%

08-28-2014 04:14:30 | More by Mweddle
Photo of brewerburgundy


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

12oz can, Boulevard tulip, no discernible freshness date.

Super clear amber beer with a very nice example of the standard off-white head. Initially there were three fingers of this. The retention is quite good, as is the lacing. I rarely, if ever, comment on packaging but the fact that this is in a can that is very simple, elegant, and identifiable bumps up the score.

Very minty and perfumed, earthy pine and grapefruit, abrasive, but not without a hearty caramel and biscuit backbone. This must be acceptably fresh because these hops are wonderfully resiny and juicy.

Caramel malt restrained by graininess begins things but is quickly submerged beneath moderate-high bitterness and hop flavors of earthy pine, grapefruit, sugary pears, rosemary, mint, tangerine, and peppery perfume. I'm being restrained not to give this a 4.5, I'm really digging it. A little drier and this would be a monster.

Creamy in the mouth and tending towards thick. The body is big.

I'd love for this to get dried out a bit. I like the malt bill and love the hopping but it's a little sweet for an IPA to do more than one at a time.

01-16-2011 23:02:51 | More by brewerburgundy
Photo of JMad


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

I drank this from a pint glass...

The beer is a light murky copper/ brown color with at thin soapy off white head. It smells heavily of pine, grapefruit and sweet malt. The taste is very bitter up front with pine, citrus peel, with a hint of ginger and sweet malt. It is light/ medium with a silky carbonation and a super dry finish. This is an excellent IPA that hang with the best.

07-24-2011 07:04:41 | More by JMad
Photo of dcloeren


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

Poured a very crisp and clear burnt orange with 2 fingers of mountainous off white head. Definitely got some lacing going down my glass.

The aroma is very pine forward and full of hops! Once it warms up a bit some orange zest shines through. It is very enticing!

I love the taste on this beer. It tastes like orange zest infused pine sap.

Medium bodied an appropriate amount of carbonation. Semi drying hop aftertaste... and it goes down oh so smooth!

Overall this is a great everyday IPA. I always keep a sixer of this in the fridge and I take at least one with me wherever it is that I'm going. Worth picking up in my opinion.

06-13-2012 23:16:54 | More by dcloeren
Photo of StoneTSR


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

APPEARANCE: Copper and clear with a quarter-inch head rested on top and about half of it vanished immediately. The other half is still hanging around, but slowly thinning. Pretty strong lacing clung to the glass all the way around. I have a feeling that Santa Fe Brewing takes a lot of care with crafting their beers. The lacing is bumping this one from a 4 to a 4.5 in my book. Very well done.

SMELL: The Happy Camper's nose is noticeable immediately upon pouring. Without even putting my nose to the glass I am already getting floral and piney hops with a whiff of orange.

TASTE: The writing on the can says "Wiping your rear with a pine cone is about as rough as camping should get. That's why we invented this portable IPA in a can." Great quote, but also possibly some inspiration for the beer, there is a lot of pine in this one, and the malt builds throughout the glass, but all of that sweetness is balanced very, very nicely with some bitter citrus flavors. It ends up just a little on the sweet side, but this one is a winner. I didn't know what to expect going in, but when I move to Colorado next month this will enter the rotation as a go-to, solid IPA.

MOUTHFEEL: This is a big, full-bodied beer that has just enough carbonation to also make it nice and thirst quenching. It also leaves an exceptionally clean, palate-cleansing aftertaste.

OVERALL: Well, not a bad start for my first foray into New Mexican beer. It was a perfect fit for my chips and spicy queso dip and now my only regret is that I left CO with only one can. Can't wait to return.

05-26-2011 21:23:32 | More by StoneTSR
Photo of beergoot


4.01/5  rDev +7.2%

Bold, expressive, pungent pine and grassy nose greets you at the pour. Thick, rocky, sticky head sitting atop a solid copper body. Hop bitterness from the get-go with a solid malt sweetness backbone. Medium bodied, clean, dry finish.

Bitter and sweet APA beer nirvana! This one has things nailed to the core. Flavor and feel are their for the hop heads and the malt lovers. Well-balanced with a bold complexity makes this beer a must-try IPA lovers.

09-29-2013 22:04:36 | More by beergoot
Photo of tbryan5


4/5  rDev +7%

05-13-2014 02:44:22 | More by tbryan5
Photo of richkrull


4/5  rDev +7%

02-10-2014 14:48:31 | More by richkrull
Photo of MeadGuyfromMD


4/5  rDev +7%

02-16-2012 21:42:21 | More by MeadGuyfromMD
Photo of fiedler84


4/5  rDev +7%

06-28-2012 01:59:37 | More by fiedler84
Photo of dbossman


4/5  rDev +7%

A: Clear copper hue with a steady one-inch head; lacing is decent

S: Citrus and pine hop aromas up front with a solid, sweet bready malt base lingering underneath

T: Pine, herbs, grass, and citrus mingle up front with loads of pleasant bitterness that are followed by a slightly burnt yet sweet bready malt undertones

F: Medium body with oily, sticky texture

O: A real solid IPA: bitter up front, quickly followed by a sweet malt base--nice beer

10-22-2011 14:32:16 | More by dbossman
Photo of jheezee


4/5  rDev +7%

12-15-2011 02:36:53 | More by jheezee
Photo of HouvilleSwamp


4/5  rDev +7%

05-14-2013 22:32:15 | More by HouvilleSwamp
Photo of Beertracker


4/5  rDev +7%

11-22-2011 06:19:00 | More by Beertracker
Happy Camper IPA from Santa Fe Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 396 ratings.