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Fathom India Pale Lager - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fathom India Pale LagerFathom India Pale Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

129 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 129
Hads: 787
Avg: 3.89
pDev: 26.22%
Wants: 50
Gots: 156 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Floydster on 09-29-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 129 | Hads: 787
Photo of mchegash
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: Orange-gold, several fingers of off-white head. Fairly clear. No carbonation visible rising up the beer.

S: Pine citrus hops. Not as strong as in an IPA but still very present. Cannot really detect any lager aspects in the aroma.

T: Complex blend of fruit-pine-citrus-resin, with a small lagery aspect. The taste is slightly sweet. Decently tasty.

F: Quick thicker and heavier than I would expect. Medium-full body. The taste has a slight sweet stickiness to it. Light carbonation.

O: Overall this is a decent IPL. The hops and lager aspects work well together creating a single united and complex beer. Good job BP.

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Photo of tone77
3.52/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A big thanks to the founding father of the canquest, woodychandler, form this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, lemons, some malts. Taste is crisp, lemons, hops, malts, balanced and very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of delta490
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours almost clear with a thick cap of white head. The head has great retention and leaves small amounts of sticky white lacing. The aroma is mostly hoppy, with some tropical fruits but there is also a little bit of lager grain sneaking in. The taste is much the same. The body is a little lighter but not thin and has a steady stream of carbonation.

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look is incredibly clear with thick frothy head.

Smell is dank hops with a malt bite at the end.

Taste matches aroma. Malt backbone with wonderfully dank hops.

I'm gonna be honest I bought these cans for a party to only discover that they were pretty beat up. Cracked one open and am happy to say it tastes pretty good.

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Photo of argock
3.51/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz can into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Freshness date stamped on bottom of can. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Honey-gold with short 1/2-finger gap of ivory head with decent retention and spare lacing.

S: Mostly tropical and citrus fruit aromas such as mango, grapefruit, passionfruit, and lime, but all of them are subdued by a decent dose of alcohol sharpness

T: Flavor is also hampered by too much alcohol presence. The hop characters are all there with lime, grapefruit, mango, and pineapple. BUt it is cut with a boozy edge that overshadows any malt character and dampens the hops.

M: Easily the worst part of the beer -- really seems flabby and boozy with no crispness. Not sure if that is due to high amounts of hop oils or a less than stellar fermentation.

O: A mixed bag with this beer -- I'm probably underrating it a little but the feel and aroma are off and this beer really feels and drinks like an ale rather than an IPL.

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Photo of lhenschke
2.74/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clear, light amber colour with a moderate head. Little to no head retention.

Smell: Not a strong smell whatsoever. Very mild hoppiness, much less than I'd expect for an "India Pale ____".

Taste: Disclaimer - this was the first IPL that I've tried, so I'm not completely sure if I dislike the entire style, or just this beer. I found the imbalance between the initial (lack of) maltiness and the finishing strong hop flavouring to be unpleasant. Overall, I found it to be very watery, and the hops couldn't make up for it.

Mouthfeel: Overly carbonated and very light, not much else to say here.

Overall: I didn't enjoy this beer very much. I found it largely flavourless (aside from the heavy hops), and too carbonated. I think if it had a more pronounced breadiness/maltiness it could balance much better with the hops, while still staying much distinct from any IPA.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Can from Bert's
Mostly clear deep golden color bubbly white head. Lemony citrus with a sweet crisp bready pilsner maltiness. Lingering mild earthy citrus bitterness. Quaffable brew.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look is copper color, a small off-white head with some nice lacing. Subtle hop aroma - not much going on in the nose. Flavor is bigger - piney hop presence, some citrus fruit, a touch of candy sweetness. Lots of bitterness at the back of the mouth. Body is medium, appropriate to the style. Really liked this one. One of my new favorite styles, and a great example.

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Photo of snaotheus
3.71/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz can poured into a tulip. 15197 is the code on the bottom.

Pours clear amber with a medium head that fades fairly quick. Smell is fruity hops with a slight yeasty funk.

Taste is hoppy and fruity, strong yeasty funk. A little lemon. Not much like any pilsner I've ever known.

Mouthfeel is abrasively carbonated. Overall, not a bad beer.

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Photo of BB1313
3.63/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz can poured into a pint glass. Pours golden with nice clarity; white head that falls leaving nice retention and nice lacing. The aromas are bready with hints of lemon and lime. Solid amount of citrus along with a touch of caramel. The flavors are hop forward. Lots of lemon and lime zest. Hints of pine. The lager characteristics are pretty subtle and hard to notice. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with active carbonation. It's pretty smooth and refreshing.

Nothing too crazy, but it's still a pretty solid brew. Clean, crisp and refreshing.

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Photo of arizcards
3.73/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a can from TW Arrowhead in mid-July for $2.99. Canned on May 22, 2015.

Beer poured orange with a nice white head upon the initial pour.

Nose has hints of grapefruit.

Taste has a nice base pale and caramel malt with the finish being bitter grapefruit rind.

Mouthfeel has a nice lager smoothness.

Overall a pretty solid beer but a tad bit pricey in a hyper competitive Phoenix market. Give it a shot if you find it refrigerated.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium golden amber with a fizzy half finger white head that dissipates to a thin ring very quickly, leaving slight lacing. Aroma of bready malt, citrus hops, light tropical fruit; lightly floral. Flavor is bready malt with light biscuit and a hint of caramel, appropriate for a lager; tropical fruit, citrus and lightly grassy hops developing through the taste to finish with a nice citrus rind, lightly piney hop bitterness. Medium bodied with a pleasant light creaminess. The imperial pilsner style is really growing on me. I tend towards malty IPAs, so the resident malty body of a rich lager is welcome support to hops. Ballast Point has a deft hand with hopping and it shows here. The hops start light and get stronger throughout the taste and finish as well as a quality IPA. I really liked this and will return to it in the near future. Well done.

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Photo of ScaryEd
3.42/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep golden color with a pure-white head. The head bubbles away quickly and leaves very little lacing around the glass.

The aroma is a bit odd on this one. I get a lot of pine and melon and what I can only describe as "wheat bread". Not a bad aroma but certainly not a pleasant one either.

The taste is very crisp and floral, with notes of tangerine and grape, as well as faint hint of mango. The bitter pine is noticeable on the back end. The malt is rather bready but overall maintains a good balance.

The feel is medium-bodied and very creamy. The alcohol is almost non-existent on the palate.

Overall, a very solid, easy-drinking beer. A great beer for a hot summer day. Nothing special, but nothing to turn your nose up at either.

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Photo of Dirtyhands
3.64/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A dull amber-gold color. Smells of Apple's, sweet caramel and alcohol. More of a cakey malt character than I'm used too. The hop is well put together with notes of fruit, earth and spice. Aftertaste is rather hollow, yet mouth-coating.

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Photo of drdiesel9483
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Golden color with slight head and pretty clear. Floral piney smell. Has that lager taste but with grassy citrus notes to it. Medium lite body but quite a bit of carbs. Pretty good

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Photo of fank2788
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz can served in a pint glass
Pale gold in color with a thin bit of foam on top. The hops are strongly present in the aroma with citrus making up the biggest portion of that aroma. I also get some peppery or more herbal or grassy hoppiness and perhaps just a bit of metallic character (I dont think it's from the can). The hops carry over to the taste with the citrus hops coming through nicely and beyond that there is a bit of the herbal flavor and then just a lot of lasting bitterness. I'm not getting too much residual sweetness or malt character apart from what you'd expect from a good clean pilsner which makes the hops seem to run at a higher IBU than they are. Light to moderate body with high carbonation and a clean but bitter finish characterize the feel of this one. Overall it is nice different way to get a good dose of hops but I think there needs to be some more base for them to balance on.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.29/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Here is yet another beer that I got to try in beta, thanks to my cousin, Colby Chandler. This dates back to Philly Beer Week in 2012 or so when he was just branching out into lagers.

From the CAN: "Dedicated to the Craft"; "IPA-Style Lager"; "Lager Meets IPA in a Winning Combination"; "Our Fathom IPL combines time-honored lagering techniques with the hop profile of a San Diego IPA recipe. The cold-fermenting lager yeast provides a clean base that allows the citrus and pine aromas from the hops to really shine. The result is a gold medal beer with a refreshing, easy drinking character and just the right amount of depth."

I scored this CAN at Bistro on Bridge in Phoenixville this past week and I am anxious to take it for a taste drive! The Crack! was appropriately loud and I celebrated with an inverted Glug as a result. This netted three fingers of foamy, rocky, French Vanilla-colored head with great retention. Nose was filled with grapefruit citrus and my mouth was beginning to water. This is a lager?!? Color was a deep Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 -5) with NE-quality clarity. My Gelt Gang pals of Midas, Mammon and Croesus showed up for their share, which was fine by me. My turn got me a light-bodied, but not watery, mouthfeel. The taste was hellbent on hops, citrus especially. Whoa! Again, revisiting the idea that this is a lager!?! I have to admit that I was not getting much in the way of pine, but this was as good as any AIPA. Finish was dry and I could really taste grapefruit well after the swallow. Quite a lager, but the hops ratio could use a slight tweak.

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Photo of JamesStreet
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Golden pour with a somewhat soap-bubble type head. Good lace on this beer. Nice piney hop aroma. Somewhat crisp sip, good and balanced. Overall, not a bad try.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.91/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. can into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

The color is a clear yellow/gold with two fingers of foamy white head and some nice lacing left on the glass.

The smell is hoppy with some green grass aroma coming out. A floral aroma is the first thing I smell but then some touches of fruit start to appear in the nose. A tease of grape and some light tangerine come out then a sweetness that has slight crisp aroma comes forth mixed with a slight acetone aroma.

The taste is has slight thump of bitterness then unleashes a fruity collage of tropical goodness. There is some melon, touches of pineapple, some slight papaya, and nice tangerine there as well. There is a slight bready flavor here that peaks out for a moment before some bitterness hits at the end and finishes things off.

The feel of this beer is medium bodied with a smooth feel that goes down pretty easy. There is a crisp feel and flavor that is different and surprising when sipping a beer that has a good amount of hops. This is a well-sculptured beer that has great flavor as well as a great feel.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours an orange copper color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin ring of lace around the glass

S: Floral and citrusy hops up front with a solid malt background. A touch grainy

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with a nice floral hoppiness that also includes some citrus notes. Maltiness balances nicely with hints of sweetness. Finishes with lingering floral notes and some graininess

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Soft

O: A nice hoppy IPL with the floral hoppiness standing out the most. Very easy to drink. Definitely roams into the IPA category while remaining rooted in the lager base. Definitely give this a shot if you're into hoppy lagers

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Photo of breadwinner
3.82/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A bit heavy for a pils, that's my main complaint, as well as a palate that seems to mingle spicy hops with a touch of spicy booze, and I'm rarely a fan of the latter. Decent but not a repeat purchase for me.

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Photo of Jaysauras
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

L: Enjoyed in a standard pint glass. Pours a cloudy, golden color with a fairly thick, cream colored head. Nice carbonation action and tons of lace. A really superb looking beer.

S: The scent was a bit underwhelming. Nothing stood out as outstanding but it was delicate and refreshing. Bready character, hops, and a hint of citrus and honey. The citrus smells a touch like tangerine and/or grapefruit. Slight piney floral scent as well, which is to be expected of an India Pale style.

T: What a blend. When I read India Pale LAGER this is almost exactly what I had in mind. There was the bitter, piney, and floral hop flavor of an IPA that is blended nicely with a simple sweet flavor of a lager. Plenty of complexity as well. Hints of grapefruit and citrus are mixed with a honey, straw and biscuit flavor. It starts slightly bitter and dry, smooths out in the middle, and then hits you with another bit of dry hoppy flavor on the aftertaste. A good taste all the way through. Feels and drinks like a lager in the beginning but finishes like an IPA. Sweet, bitter, smooth, and dry. All combine for quite a nice sip.

F: Usually I'm not big on feel, but this one stood out in a good way. It is crisp and refreshing, but also dry, prickly and strong. Finishes cleaner than a regular IPA but still gives a bit of a bite only recognizable from IPAs. Plenty to like with this. The creamy head also gives a nice foamy feel on the sip. Head lasted throughout the entire drink and never dissipated. Very satisfying.

O: Solid. Simply put. A great combo of flavors, a good mixture of styles, and overall a very solid beer. Not necessarily an easy drinking sessionable beer, but definitely one worth grabbing a pint of on a summer day. Never been a huge fan of pilsners but this puppy was solid. Balance between flavors and feels was perfectly executed. Only complaint was the lack of aroma, but that was really nothing in comparison to what else it brought to the table.

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Photo of Catracho5
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce can poured into a Ballast Point tulip glass

A: Clear, orange, slightly amber color, poured a thick creamy bright white head that dissipated after a few minutes, lots of lacing, nice steady stream of carbonation coming off the bottom, looks more like an IPA than it does a lager.

A: Citrus, grapefruit, pine, slight sweet malt comes through, for being a lager this smells just like an IPA with lots of citrus notes.

T: Citrus, grapefruit bitterness up front, some pine bitterness, finishes like a lager, it doesn't have that lingering bitterness of an IPA, but it finishes crisp, slightly dry, there is a biscuit, bread not finish to the beer, taste really good.

M: Medium mouthfeel, slightly dry finish, average carbonation.

O: My first time with an IPA style lager, definitely different, smells like an IPA, starts like an IPA, however, it finishes crisp and short, there is not a bitter aftertaste like an IPA, which I like, but a cleaner, easier drinking finish. A good beer but if I want citrus and pine bitterness in a beer with a strong finish I will reach for an IPA/IIPA, not an IPA style lager. If IPAs are too bitter for you, you might want to give Fathom a try as it finishes cleaner than IPA yet still has IPA citrus and pine notes.

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Photo of GarrettB
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

September 6th, 2013 - As of June, 2015, Ballast Point's incredible label art for Fathom adorns the wall of the tasting room near Old Town, San Diego. But back during the review, I believe this was still just paper on bottle, showing off a fresh and crisp beer for San Diego late Fall drinking. The body is deep and gold, giving off a fresh and hoppy aroma. The flavor is sweet and surprisingly tangy, with some lemon and orange. Hops and a fresh, clean "pils" taste still define the body, and overall I'm feeling ready for another round of late September sweating.

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Photo of 57md
4.14/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Light copper in color. The nose had notes of both citrus and hops. This offering is refreshing and drinkable without being anywhere near thin. The malt profile is solid.

This is a winner.

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Fathom India Pale Lager from Ballast Point Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 129 ratings.