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Even Keel - Ballast Point Brewing Company

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Even Keel
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112 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 112
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 12.33%
Wants: 5
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  3.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A session beer for Hop-heads, this ale gets double dry-hopped.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 06-06-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 112 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of PEIhop


5/5  rDev +34%

11-21-2011 02:28:58 | More by PEIhop
Photo of MasterMustace


5/5  rDev +34%

11-16-2011 21:05:24 | More by MasterMustace
Photo of NathanMcIntyre


4.75/5  rDev +27.3%

06-12-2013 18:18:58 | More by NathanMcIntyre
Photo of HopHead84


4.6/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5


On tap at the Olds Grove location. The beer appears hazed dark orange with a frothy one inch white head. Retention is excellent and lacing is scattered.

The aroma is an exlosion of hops, with notes of grapefuit, mango, papaya, and orange pith. Malt is faint and crackery. Wow. The most potent hop aroma I've witnessed on a beer this low in alcohol. The flavor is similarly awesome, with a pleasant lower moderate level of bitterness and a dry mouthfeel. The hops are fresh and explosive with mingled citrus and tropical notes.

At 3.5% I can with certainty say that this is the best session beer I've come across. I'm in awe. Outstanding. Please bottle this!

Serving type: on-tap

04-28-2010 21:41:32 | More by HopHead84
Photo of bennetj17


4.6/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap @ 1702. Clear, deep gold, with massive white foam. The head seems to last forever. The aroma is hop dominant, with loads of pine and citrus. Smells more like a west coast IPA to me.

The taste is quite nice, with more citrus hop dominance. Very piney also, the malt stays in the background and is not too sweet. This is very flavorful for such a lower ABV pale ale, although you have to almost be a hop head. The carbonation was very appropriate and mouthfeel held up well, it wasn't too thin.

Considering you can session this beer I think it is a great choice. The ABV is actually only 3.5%. We ordered pitchers and I had several pints without really feeling a buzz. I'm always looking for hop bombs, and this is one you could actually drink alot of. Highly recommended...

Serving type: on-tap

08-19-2009 18:11:03 | More by bennetj17
Photo of nickd717


4.58/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler shared thanks to largadeer.

Pours clear golden with a one-finger white head and good lacing

Aroma showcases loads of hops for the ABV. Citrusy and herbal, along with a touch of sweet malt.

Flavor is solid for a session beer (in the true sense of the word) like this. Slightly sweet malt with a hop kick that is orangey and herbal, almost tea-like.

Medium-light body with lots of resins attacking your palate.

Overall, wow, this is an excellent a pale ale, especially at 3.5% ABV. I could session the hell out of this, and what do you know, I can even use the verb "session" and not offend the term's tireless defenders when referring to this one.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2010 17:12:07 | More by nickd717
Photo of largadeer


4.5/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler from Hophead84. Thanks, Shane! Into a Moonlight imperial pint glass, the beer is a hazy copper color topped by a big frothy white head that rises to a two-finger height. Bright citrus hop aroma, grapefruity with a touch of orange and a nice bready malt backbone. Bitter grapefruit is the first thing to hit the palate, followed by flavors of orange peel. There's a nice bready malt backbone that provides a surprisingly hefty body. Nicely carbonated with a bitter and dry finish, this is awesome stuff, a true American session beer. 

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2010 07:01:16 | More by largadeer
Photo of weeare138


4.43/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Khyber Pass Pub...
Appears a light golden amber with a small white head that slowly fades into a cap and collar. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of a walloping of dry hopping, citrus goodness with hints of caramel, vanilla, and floral notes.
Taste is of the aromas with light notes of pine, and citrus merging nicely with the malted grain and yeast.
Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, evenly balanced, and simply one that you can come back to time and time again during the same night.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2010 21:49:22 | More by weeare138
Photo of FosterJM


4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

479th review on BA
Draft to taster
@Old Grove

App- Bright vibrant yellow with a nice head to it. A little bit of lace as well.

Smell- Big hops, with a little bitterness even in the nose. The citrus was pretty evident as well.

Taste- HUGE flavors and was super dry. A great session beer to rival alot on the market with its flavor, low ABV and overall taste.

Mouth- Medium bodied and yes even medium carbed IMO. Not a soft beer at all.

Drink- I am kicking myself for not getting a growler of this. It was refreshing, tasty and just plain good.

Serving type: on-tap

05-19-2011 22:35:47 | More by FosterJM
Photo of hoptrip619


4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was stoked to see this on tap at Hamilton's the other night. Even Keel is arguably the best session beer coming out of SD. It's kind of like Sculpin light.

A: Pours a bright golden orange w/o much of head and that's fine because it means there is more beer in the glass.

S: For a "small" beer there is a ton of citrus and floral hop aroma. Not sure but must have dry-hopped with cascades, amarillo, chinook, or a combo of them.

T: Lots of citrus hop character with a touch of toasted malt in the background. Again, this is what I would imagine a light IPA to taste like but calling something light IPA would be...

M: Light in body with crisp carbonation and a nice dry finish.

D: This is the perfect beer to drink at unch when you have to go back to work. You can even have 2!

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2010 14:25:26 | More by hoptrip619
Photo of womencantsail


4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the second time I've had this beer. The first time was at Blue Palms and then this weekend at Ballast Point. I was not impressed the first time, but figured I would give it another chance.

A: The beer is a very clear light golden color with a thin layer of white foam that leaves a bit of lacing on the glass.

S: Considering the description and all the mentioning of dry-hopping, I had high expectations. This is a pretty fragrant beer, especially for a pale. Lots of citrus hop aromas going on here.

T: This definitely has more of an IPA flavor to it. A lot of bitter pine and grapefruit flavors from the hops with hardly any malt flavor. You would not expect this to be such a low gravity beer.

M: The beer is quite light on the tongue, but that is the point of it. Very lively carbonation helps to keep it light as well.

D: This is a beer I wish was more readily available (even bottled). An amazing session beer and very refreshing. It's nice to see such a flavorful, low alcohol beer like this.

Serving type: on-tap

01-04-2010 17:42:21 | More by womencantsail
Photo of csmartin6

New York

4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

12-21-2013 05:00:03 | More by csmartin6
Photo of GJ40

North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at the Ballast Point brewery.

A - Golden and clear with a moderate off white head.

S - Nice floral and fruity hops.

T - Starts with floral and fruity hops then turns to a citrusy bitterness. This beer is smooth and easy with plenty of flavor despite the lower alcohol level.

M - A moderate carbonation and a light consistency without being thin.

D - As billed, this is a great session beer; especially if you're watching the alcohol intake. I could see reviews being harsh if you compare this head to head with an IPA or maybe even an APA but as a lower alcohol session beer, it's fantastic.

Serving type: on-tap

08-19-2009 14:16:40 | More by GJ40
Photo of RaulMondesi


4.18/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

For a session beer under 4%, the Raul man was all kinds of surprised. Like, a Cartier watch falling out of the piñata kind of surprised! Really crisp, juicy, and has a nice malt backbone that keeps you on the level like Congress should. Just all kinds of smooth and tasty like Olivia Munn biting into a plum.


Serving type: on-tap

07-14-2014 06:31:48 | More by RaulMondesi
Photo of Gueuzedude


4.18/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled 1702, Tucson AZ; August 2009
This beer arrives from the tap a darker color than I was expecting; it is an amber, lightly hazy hue that is topped by a thin, pale tan colored head that is typical for a tap pour. There is a nice, clean hop citrus aroma to this that has notes of orange zest, some bright tangerine character, grapefruit, and a solid lychee note. There is a hint of crystal malt character here in the nose that adds light notes of toasted grain and caramel.

This has a nice biting bitterness to it as it first hits my tongue. It is quite dry which mutes the citrus hop flavors, but not completely as notes of grapefruit, tangerine, spicy citrus oil, a touch of lychee and a lingering apricot note in the finish are all noticeable. This is nice and light feeling on the palate, the hops actually provide some astringent mouthfeel that makes this beer seem a bit fuller than it actually is. Some pine and menthol flavors are also here and help to add to the hop complexity. There is just a hint of malt backbone here with notes of toasted grain and a touch of caramel.

This is very nice, I could drink a lot of this if the alcohol is anywhere near 4%, unfortunately there seems to be quite a bit of conflicting information on the actual alcohol content of this beer. This is perhaps not complext enough, but the mix of dominant hop character and light malt backbone in a low-alcohol form makes for a very nice beer.

Serving type: on-tap

08-23-2009 02:57:16 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of tonistruth


4.13/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

on tap @ Stone's Bistro in Escondido, California

A- straw with bronze hues, not much of a head, id say just a little white crown sits on top of the beer

S- floral, citric, fruity malts

T- a bitter sweet flavor battles back and forth throughout with the bitterness winning in the end, soft citrus flavors, a flash of harsh strong citric rind in middle, earthy and a bit soapy, moments of nice balance

M- dry and coarse with some tongue numbing bitterness, dry after

D- a very sessionable and hoppy beer, very interesting and enjoyable, hop heads looking for a sessionable beer should look here, smells awesome, but a bit soapy for my liking

Serving type: on-tap

08-18-2008 23:44:49 | More by tonistruth
Photo of Thorpe429


4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright gold with a good-sized off-white head. The aroma is very nice, with some floral and citrus hops that aren't too overpowering, but are well situated for the style. The taste has the floral and fruity character from the hops, a little bit of bitterness, and a little bit of bready malt. Light to medium-bodied with good carbonation. Not as enjoyable overall as some of the other Ballast Point offerings, but a very nice and sessionable hoppy brew.

Serving type: on-tap

02-17-2010 15:31:08 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of KFBR392


4.06/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours with a copper orange color. Big head of two and a half fingers on the pour which dissipated but was present while drinking. Active carbonation is right on for the style. Random sticky lacing left behind with each drink.

Smell: Crisp dried fruits and not overly bitter pine greet the drinker. Some floral accents are picked up on the body, combining with heavy saturated citrus. Just a touch of caramel malts picked up on the back end.

Taste: Initial hit of soft tropical fruits really pulls the drinker in. Grassy hop profile opens up on the body and lingers on the palate throughout. There is a creamy, buttery malt backbone that really allows the hops to shine. The finish is lingering pine and grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: Really impressive showing for a brew ay 3.8% abv. Easy drinking with enough body to keep you interested. Carbonation fits well.

Overall: For me this is a solid middle ground between Stone Go To and Founders All Day. Definitely hop forward with a present malt profile. Really impressed by the pop that this brew bring being what it is. A summer staple.

Serving type: can

07-11-2014 00:32:11 | More by KFBR392
Photo of turboedtwo


4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Toronado in North Park. I had assumed this was an IPA but I guessed wrong, at least according to this site.

A - Clear and gold. Your standard pale ale coloring.

S - I got a nice whiff of hops and a bit of a flowery aroma.

T - No doubt about it, this is a hoppy one. Has a bit of a pine taste as well.

M - It hast a light feel on the tongue with a little bite.

D - Drinkability is good, but I don't know if I could keep going. It's great but not something I'd stick to. I'd have to switch it up.

Serving type: on-tap

03-03-2009 08:32:08 | More by turboedtwo
Photo of aquazr1


4/5  rDev +7.2%

02-16-2014 19:09:00 | More by aquazr1
Photo of Booner818


4/5  rDev +7.2%

07-05-2014 21:27:43 | More by Booner818
Photo of Chugs13

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +7.2%

11-25-2013 00:04:22 | More by Chugs13
Photo of SadMachine

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +7.2%

01-13-2013 01:48:20 | More by SadMachine
Photo of JRod1969

New York

4/5  rDev +7.2%

11-12-2013 23:34:05 | More by JRod1969
Photo of sideshowe


4/5  rDev +7.2%

06-04-2012 14:34:51 | More by sideshowe
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Even Keel from Ballast Point Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 112 ratings.