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Sculpin IPA - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sculpin IPASculpin IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

10,711 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,711
Reviews: 2,189
rAvg: 4.41
pDev: 9.75%
Wants: 1,113
Gots: 2,611 | FT: 50
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brentk56 on 04-02-2006

Originally named Northstar IPA. Debuted in 2005.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,711 | Reviews: 2,189 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of zoso493
4.72/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this one in a pint glass from a 22 oz. bomber immediately following a Pliny the Elder. Let's see how it stacks up.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful golden amber color that is effervescently hazy. It has a thinnish one- to two-finger head that leaves some moderate lacing on the glass.

Smell: This has one has a fantastically diverse scent of hops to it. Just about every wonderful hop smell you can imagine comes out in this one. There are the bright fruity scent, the resinous pines and of course the acidic citruses. There's also an ever-present undercurrent of deliciously sweet caramel malts that tie the whole thing together.

Taste: The hops are tied together very nicely in the taste, as well, although they are just a touch too subdued to give this brew the ultimate score. Regardless, they are woven together masterfully and the sweet malts just make them seem like are smothered in sugar. This is a fantastically smooth and complex IPA.

Mouthfeel: This is a very nicely carbonated and crisp IPA. It's easy to forget that this is just a single IPA until you notice the mouthfeel which is pleasantly medium-bodied. This is no gripe on the beer, though, as this just makes it all the more drinkable.

Drinkability: This is an endlessly drinkable beer. It's not an overly hopped West Coast IPA (although it's definitely of the West Coast variety) and will definitely leave your palate able to take more - lots more. This is a beer that I just never want to stop drinking.

Overall, this is truly a special IPA. Since I had it just after a Pliny the Elder I'd have to give the nod to the PtE but I hate to make such a comparison because this is an exceptional beer. It's a tremendously intricate IPA and is worth every effort in being sought out. Top-notch beer.

Photo of Beerman6686
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of jhtipton
4.2/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice! One of my favorites from this brewery. Poured a rich three finger head that slowly receded to one finger head with bumpy foam. Nice aroma, very floral, piney and hoppy. Nice orangish hue but clear. Goes down smooth but since I purchased in a bomber, probably not a session beer. Will definitely try this agin. Nice label, too. Thank you, Whole Foods.

Photo of GarrettMD
4.11/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Cloudy yellow hue. Half a finger white head that settles quickly. Not a ton of visible carbonation.

S - Hops, hops, hops, citrus, grapefruit, sweet orange, and a hint of pine. Some slight caramel sweetness might be coming through, though that could just be the vast amount of hops playing tricks on me.

T - Citrus just completely drops off. Pine is pretty much the only hop flavor in there. It's almost a different beer. Malt is well balanced. Sweet caramel malts balance out the bitter middle.

M - A little thinner than I imagined, though based on the aroma, I might have been expecting a double IPA. Finish is slightly bitter and watery. Not too much of a fan of the finish, it doesn't end the beer too well.

D - Good drinkability. Finish doesn't exactly have me needing to go back for more, but the bitterness isn't overpowering. Very easy drinking IPA, and not too high ABV for the style. Would definitely drink again but I feel it's slightly over-rated.

Photo of Illmaticzx
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Faina
5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of Humulus85
4.75/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of Jlu73183
4.5/5  rDev +2%

Photo of arash1000
3.5/5  rDev -20.6%

Photo of SomethingClever
4.09/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into shaker pint on tap

A: light Amber color slight orangish hue nice frothy almost creamy head

S: citrus maybe light lemon a little bit of cracker bread malts

T: light citrus with a rush of bitterness and maybe a little bit more maltiness than it should be

M: light to medium mouth feel numbs and lays on the tongue

O: this is a solid beer when it's fresh it's glorious but this beer tends to fall off quickly. The one I'm drinking now is headed toward that but is still highly drinkable right now. 

Photo of beerded_drunk
3.75/5  rDev -15%

Photo of pourmeadrink
4.75/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of Mike-Harms
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of A-Sox
4.5/5  rDev +2%

Photo of Mmcdonald79
4.3/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of mta11c
4.5/5  rDev +2%

Photo of iTunesUpdates
5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of charrel
4/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of BDLbrewster
3.26/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Pours a goldenrod hued yellowish amber color with a small frothy head that leaves a bunch of sticky lacing.

The nose seems somewhat subdued, there are some light pine, orange pith and mild grapefruit aromas that mix well with sweet undercooked caramel.

The taste doesn't scream west coast to me, pine forward with hints of fresh orange pith and lemon. The backbone is on the weak side and the caramel that is there is overshadowed by the fairly strong pine needle flavors. The alcohol has somewhat of a medicinal bite to it and the finish leaves a lingering bitterness that is not undesirable.

The mouthfeel is light-medium and not overly viscous and the carbonation is pretty much on point.

Overall this is a solid IPA in its own right that sort of walks the line between IPA and DIPA. I can see how some people would swoon over this brew but with so many knock out IPAs coming from the west, this one comes off as run of the mill to me.

Photo of TheFlern
4.54/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This beer tastes like how you would expect a San Diego IPA to taste like. Lots of big citrus flavors. Mainly grapefruit I would say. Not much malt going on. 7% ABV isn't too hot either. Good mouthfeel as the bitterness doesn't scorch the tongue or palate. A very solid IPA. Not the best you can find in San Diego or even SoCal for that matter but a solid choice nonetheless. I was very glad to find it at Brewforia in Meridian, Idaho. So thanks to them for getting it fresh to a relatively small market. Cheers Ballast Point!

Photo of Falcon91Wolvrn03
4.13/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Pours a hazy golden orange color with a nice head and minimal lacing.

Smell – Citrusy; primarily tangerine, with some grapefruit.

Taste – Taste is very similar to the smell, but also includes a very nice pine flavor.

Mouthfeel – Good carbonation, lightly creamy.

Drinkability – Goes down easy. A very nice IPA.

Photo of keanex
4.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

From a 22 bottle with no freshness date. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Crystal clear amber body with light carbonation activity and a thin white head.

S: Very tropical fruity, lots of sweet fruits here. Mango and peach are the big scents here with a slight piney hops thrown in. Very inviting.

T: Very clean, a malty sweet up front taste with a blend of hops coming in early and finishing strong. There's a lot of sweet fruit with a bitter piney bite, but this is well balanced and easy to drink.

M: Medium bodied with fizzy carbonation coating my tongue.

O: This is an excellent IPA, I love it and put it on the level of Double Jack by Firestone Walker. The only thing keeping me from giving higher ratings is the price, $10.99 for 22 ounces brings this down a lot especially when Hop Stoopid can be had for $4.99 for a 22 ounce and Double Jack for $7.99 for 22 ounces. I won't buy this again due to the price.

Photo of RES
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Hopscat
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- On tap in home, got a huge head of foam initially then subsidises to nice quarter inch white thick foam. Leaves pretty lacing on glass. Golden amber color but in low light not really sure.
S- Really nice floral hops, fruity citrus with some grassy characters. Very nice .
T- Malt sweetness up front with grapefruit, mango fruity goodness. Strong hops follow on then continue into midway and end of swallow. Malt balance shines with biscuit , caramel holds up well with the aggressive hops throughout. NOthing of an off character nature found.
M- about medium bodied. Carbo seems right with nice refreshing sparkle. Very smooth drinking.
O- Just an overall fantastic IPA. Does the west coast style extremely well. Probably my #1 IPA in my short journey through craft beer land. I've got many more to try[Pliny, Heady, Fuzzy BD, to name a few] but the reputation for Sculpin holds up for me.

Photo of arfenhouse
4.49/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Re-reviewing canned release. 6 day old can.

A: Clear copper with white head. Retention is above average. Decent Lacing.

S: Pine, juicy pineapple, caramel sweetness, and bitter grapefruit. Peach in the background.

T: Grapefruit, pineapple, and a some peach. The fruity bitterness is easy to handle. A small bit of sweet bread/honey sweetness. Aftertaste is bitter grapefruit.

M: Medium-full mouthfeel with medium carbonation. On the dry side.

O: Very tasty. Very fruity and overall fresh tasting. Not overly bitter, meets the standards of a high quality IPA.

The canned version differed mainly in the mouthfeel. Feels fuller bodied with a little less carbonation than the bottled versions.

Sculpin IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 10,711 ratings.