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Even Keel Session IPA - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Even Keel Session IPAEven Keel Session IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

126 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 126
Hads: 672
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 23.44%
Wants: 29
Gots: 200 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  3.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 06-06-2006

A session beer for Hop-heads, this ale gets double dry-hopped.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 126 | Hads: 672
Photo of Urk1127
3.46/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

-Finger and half of head, golden orange color
-Light malts, buscuity, bitter vegetal hops
-Get a zip of bitterness from hops, light biscuit malt, vegetal like aftertaste
-Crisp, high carbonation

-good but not best session for me id say. Would buy again though.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a clear, medium coppery amber with a half finger whtie head that dissipates to a thick cap with good lacing. Aroma of bready malt, grassy hops with light citrus, a hint of tropical fruit. Flavor follows, with mild bready malt, grassy hops with grapefruit and lemon citrus, light fruit. Finishes with a good grapefruit rind hop bitterness. Light bodied with active carbonation. A lot of hoppiness in this light pale ale, but surprisingly well supported by the mild malt. The malt is bit attenuated and left me wishing for more flavor and body; but considering the very low ABV, this is quite an achievement. Like all "session IPAs", left me wanting a full bodied IPA, but if I wanted this style, this would be at the top of the list. In the gray area between light IPAs and pale ale; I'd call it the latter, although it is robustly hopped.

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Photo of fank2788
3.64/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can served in a pint glass
Clear copper in color with a finger or so of white head that settles but laces during the session. The smell is quite nice as a mix of both floral or grassy hops with some lemony citrus in there as well. Not much of malt in the aroma and that carries over into the taste where the hops definitely take the lead. More of the floral hop flavor comes through than the citrus but there is some lemon pepper bite in there as well. Again the malts are quite light with just pales and no residual sugar or sweetness. Very light in body, almost too much in my opinion given some of the other session IPAs I've had in the past as comparisons but it is quite refreshing and easy to drink without lacking flavor. Overall this is good but as I mentioned there may be better more readily available session IPAs or APAs available.

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Photo of HopAlongG
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having tried most of the sessions out there this one stands out. Not sure how they pack this much delicious hoppiness into a 3.8% IPA but I don't really care. Perfect for summertime swilling when you're having a lot more than one. Usually squeeze a grapefruit sculpin in with them too.....which is even better.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear orange color with white head. Aroma is really nice and hoppy fruity and herbal notes. Taste starts also hoppy with fruits, herbs and some resinous notes too. Finishes a bit abrupt, leaving only a slight lingering bitterness. Body is light and refreshing. For 3.8% ABV, this beer is pretty tasty.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.29/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

L - Bronze with a little bit of clarity. Huge 2 fingers of head. Sticky lace left all over the glass

S - Huge hop nose. Dry hopped for sure. Smells delicious. So far it looks and smells like a DIPA

T - Awesomely hoppy. One of the better session IPA's I have had. Definitely recommend

F - Light bodied and medium carbonation

O - Like any session, there is no maltiness to balance the brew out. If you swallow quickly, you can enjoy the tasty hoppy kick. Bonus is you don't get buzzed drinking this one. If thats what your looking for

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Photo of raiderandbeerfan
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Mild yellow pour, heavy water content to it, mild thin white head 1/9" on the top. Smell is awesome. Massive double dose of dry hopping here. Extremely citrus and tropical fruity. Wowza.

Taste is excellent, elite 1st tier session ipa stuff. Right up there with alpha session and whatever Berryessa brewing calls their session ipa. Mouthfeel is good, but it is essentially hop water at this point. No malt aspect detectable really. This is what you want in the summertime on the golf course, at the beach, around the pool. It is a staple.

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Photo of Kurmaraja
4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A great looking beer with an orange / amber hue and abundant head. Nice lacing. Nose is grassy, leaves, freshly mowed lawn with grapefruit and orange pith. A slight graininess which is nice for a beer at such low abv. Taste bursts with pine, grassy, grapefruit. Clean and bright, nuanced bitterness throughout. Way crushable and delicious.

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Photo of JackieKu
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can.

A: Clear amber. The foam escaped from the can once opened, fortunately it stopped soon. There still a lot of foam after poured into glass.
S: Grassy and floral.
T: Grassy, some tangerine. Medium- bitterness. Quite dry.
M: Light bodied. Quite refreshing.
O: Well fitted the session IPA style, drinkable yet hoppy, best replacement of the bud.

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Grassy, herbaceous, citrusy, faint hints of tropicalness. Slightly bitter on the back end. Drinks well for only 3.8%. A decent session IPA but not my favorite.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.38/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear amber color with a 2 finger width foamy head. Head retention and lacing are both excellent. Nice fresh, citrus, piney resin aroma. Strong resin. Maltiness is low but good with nice transition to a strong piney hop, ending in a grapefruit taste. There is a hint of lemon as well. Moderately astringent. Light bodied with moderate to heavy carbonation. This is one of my favorite session IPAs.

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Photo of dar482
3.69/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer comes in a reddish amber.

The aroma offers grass, spicy hops, a light bready malt, honey, overly ripe tropical, lemon.

The flavor follows with some overripe tropical, almost like spoiled. A honey sweet bready malt in the middle, then onto a medium plus bitterness of lingering grassiness and herbaceous.

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Photo of biboergosum
4.04/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, a very cool new brewery arrival in Alberta. 'San Diego Session Ale' probably means what I think it means.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium copper amber colour, with two fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and well bubbly ecru head, which leaves a hanging band of dripping paint swath lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells of pungent red grapefruit, orange, and sweet lemon citrus, bready, grainy pale malt, a touch of caramel, some hard water flinty notes, a twinge of musty, dank pine resin, and further leafy, weedy, and floral hops. The taste is more mixed domestic citrus bowl fruitiness, a growing tropical sideshow, gritty pale and crackery caramel malt, muddled pine and its forest floor friends, a waning chalky character, and some airy floral bitterness.

The carbonation is fairly innocuous in its lightly-rendered frothiness, the body a so-so middleweight (which is way ahead of the curve for this off-shoot 'style'), with maybe a smidge of hop bitterness picking away at the otherwise standard smoothness. It finishes off-dry, a lingering graininess gamely parrying the still heady citrusy, piney, and floral hop contingent.

Well, disparage a new style, and soon enough, the pretenders fall away, and the big (craft) boys get it right - despite this one's low ABV, the malt and hops bring their A-game, and prove that it is indeed possible to go big, while at least paying lip service to balancing the hops, for a truly sessionable IPA offering.

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Photo of crob3888
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a golden-orange with a one finger creamy head, that dissipates to a thin lace on the glass and film on top of the beer. Immediately you smell the grapefruit. The taste is of grapefruit, honey-drizzled nectarines, some breadiness, slight flavor of grassy hops. Slight bitterness. Fairly substantial mouthfeel for only 3.8% abv. Medium-low carbonation. Definitely more of a pale ale in my mind due to the balance between medium hoppiness and malt backbone. I dig it.

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4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I am trying to rate session ales as a class/style of their own. If this where to be compared to, say, sculpin or big eye, no comparison. But in the world of session brews, this one isn't too damn bad. Lots of hops, although perhaps a little muted. Bit of malt sweetness. Crushable to the fullest extent.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured a clear, copper body with good one finger head and minor lace. Aroma is mostly citric hopped with touches of sweet malt. The citric and grapefruit hop taste is pleasing while light and overpowering and balanced with a bit of sweet malts and in fact finishes with kiss of sweetness. Simplistic and nothing to write home about but pretty enjoyable.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz can was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a yellow orange color with great clarity and vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing down the glass as the beer was drank too.

Smell: Light citrus, herbal, grassy, and tropical hops followed by toasted, biscuity, and pale malts.

Taste: You definitely pick up a lot more if that hop flavor. Amazing that it was barely noticeable in the aroma, but packs s ouch on the palate. Chewiness and light bitterness in the rear too.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, crisp, refreshing, crushable, tasty, medium carbonation, a little chewy, and light bitterness.

Overall: Another warm weather beer added to this list and a great beer for watching football too. I look forward to more of these in the future.

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Photo of chinchill
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can ($2 at Tiger Mart; no clear dating) served in a lager glass.

Look: A good looking beer with a light copper colored body topped by a semi-durable, off-white head. Exceptional lacing.

The herbal-grassy-citrus hop mix is not exactly what I prefer, especially in the aroma, but works quite well upon tasting. Excellent balance with the malt load. Near medium body with a semi-dry finish.

O: a flavorful ale with less than 4% ABV, this is a true and exemplary "session IPA".

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Photo of headlessparrot
4.04/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Just arrived on the shelves in Alberta, Canada. Poured from a 12oz bottle. Colour is darker than I was expecting, almost copper or orange. Clear, with light carbonation visible. Capped by a finger or so of weak head that surprisingly manages to persist. Lots of lacing on the glass.

Smell is slightly dank, lots of pine and resin, with a solid citrusy backbone. Very perfumey. Pineapple, mango. But also a decent bit of malty backbone--some biscuit, bread. Slightly peppery. Taste is much the same. Initial dank, piney resin with a touch of citrus, and a surprising malt base from which it stems. Great balance after an initial bitter kick. Good body (especially for the ABV), and moderate carbonation.

We're here, we're session IPAs. Get used to it. As good an entry into the crowded field as I've had the chance to try, this one could fool you--it's a much bigger, richer, more flavourful beer than its ABV would suggest. Definitely a standard-bearer for the session IPA substyle (with a very welcome sub-4.0 ABV).

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Photo of jwc215
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle:

Pours deep golden with a thin head. Lacing sticks, especially as it progresses.

The smell is of juicy citrus with a hint of caramel. Robust - I could smell the strong juicy hop goodness upon opening the bottle.

The taste is of citrus/grapefruit with caramelized bread/malt. Leafy, dry, refreshing finish.

For the modest abv/light body, it holds together well.

One of the better (if not best) "session" IPA's that I have had. Great choice for a hoppy brew with modest abv and a lighter body. Easy to drink, it is indeed a "sessionable" ale!

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Photo of TimWakimika
4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Nice to see a session IPA so low on ABV (3.8%). Earns the 'session' label on that front. This has a great, crisp, citrusy aroma. Taste is a bit more subdued than aroma would lead you to expect, as seems fairly normal with sessions. Clean finish with medium bitterness. One of the best session IPAs I have found yet.

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Photo of Dirtyhands
4.28/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Quality sesssion right here. While aroma May be low to minimal, fruit and earth flavors explode upon the first sip. Think big, drink little. This is another very well done session ipa.

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Photo of RoamingGnome
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I grabbed a six pack of this the other day, and I've got to say, this has to be my new favorite session IPA. I don't drink session IPAs regularly, but I've had my share, and I found this to be the most flavorful and refreshing. It's a fine looking beer in a pint glass, but admittedly, I slugged all but one of these down directly from the can. The aroma is fresh and lively. There is a bit of pine and some citrus. I'd say mainly white grapefruit. The taste follows the nose... The body is light and refreshing, with a nice crisp finish. Overall, I'd rather drink this over both Day Time from Lagunitas or All Day from Founders. The only drawback is maybe the $9.99 price tag for a beer with a 3.8% ABV, but then again that is why it's called a session ale.

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Photo of danmouer
3.62/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I will admit to not being a hophead, but I am a very experienced BJCP beer judge. I do believe this is right on the money for someone looking for a winner among the emerging crowd of session IPAs. For one thing, Sculpin's Even Keel is brewed at 3.8% abv, which is much more reasonable than the run of the mill session IPAs which typically run to 4.5, 5, or even higher. Noot my idea of session beers.

My bias against the resiny, citrusy, unbalanced hop character and the cloying bitterness of the finish may keep me from raving about this offering, but it is, I think, what many IPA lovers expect and seek in their beer. The crisp medium-light body and dry finish are just what I was looking for in a chilled can of brewski on a hot summer day in Virginia. I'd love to taste this same beer brewed as a session pale with about 15 IBUs knocked out of recipe (keep the hops, just addc them dry in the aging tank or real-ale conditioning cask!

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into a tulip.

Copper body with an ecru colored cap. Great retention, lace all over the glass. Biscuity malt with a touch of caramel lay the groundwork for tropical and citrus hops. Papaya, mango, grapefruit, and melon dance on the palate. Little bit of citrus bitterness lingers. Great body for a 3.8% beer. Very nice session IPA. I wasn't expecting much for such a small abv, but they did a great job getting the flavor to pop.

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Even Keel Session IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 126 ratings.