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Calico Copper Amber Ale - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Calico Copper Amber AleCalico Copper Amber Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

956 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 956
Reviews: 383
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 10.79%
Wants: 22
Gots: 45 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 04-10-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 956 | Reviews: 383 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sleazo

New York

3.45/5  rDev -9.2%

A_Pours a clear chestnut with a small beige head. A steady stream of bubbles replenishes the small cap.

S_Sweet aroma with a nutty sort of finish. There is also a mild fruity yeast presence.

T_The smell ends up being quite indicative of the taste. Mostly a sweet caramel malt presence with a fruity yeast undertone. The hops come through more as it warms providing an earthy and slightly piney backdrop to the caramel malt.

M_Lighter bodied with a mid range carbonation.

D_Reminds me of Fat Tire and that isn't neccessarily a good thing but it is better. Warm it up a bit for full enjoyment.

11-09-2008 04:05:23 | More by sleazo
Photo of avalon07

South Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -5.8%

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had and amber color and a somewhat thin consistency. Not a whole lot of head, but some good lacing.

S: Aroma of hops, malt and an almost bready quality as well.

T: More hops than I expected in this one. Lots of malt compliment the hops, as well as a citrusy element. Not the most overpowering of tastes, but solid.

M: A solid amount of carbonation and a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

D: This is a decent, well made beer that goes down easy. Not my favorite, but good.

11-08-2008 17:55:44 | More by avalon07
Photo of jwinship83


3.9/5  rDev +2.6%

A- amber colored body under an off white finger of head with little lacing. steady stream of bubbles rises to the top of the glass.

S- sweet caramel and toffee malt against floral hops.

T- the bite from the hops is stronger than i could smell but its not overpowering or unbalanced. the malt is about what i was expecting.

M- crisp clean light and refreshing.

D- my first ballast point beer, and its one id like to try again. just picked up this one as a single, but its one that id try again if given the chance. sessionable enough to have a few of without regrets. a good representation of the style.

10-06-2008 02:34:17 | More by jwinship83
Photo of rxdrewthejew


3.68/5  rDev -3.2%

I feel like I've neglected the amber ale style, so this will be the first of hopefully a number of amber's that I sample. Picked this up today at Vendome, poured the bomber into my Bass pint glass.

A: Lives up to its name-a deep brownish red, or copper. Good two finger head, tan and heavily pitted, with solid retention.

S: Good malt base, a bit roasty and some sweet almost candi-like malt as well. Smells a bit fruity with moderate tropical esters. Not much bitterness to detect in the nose.

T: Opening is nice and malty, again with the somewhat roasted feel and a touch of sweetness. Less fruitiness in the flavor than the smell. Hops come out midway through and really dominate the end of the flavor. Hops are somewhat citrus and maybe a little pine, although the flavors do get balanced a bit by the malt.

MF: Feel is fairly thin, but sticky and with good carbonation, so it seems a bit thicker than it really is. Very smooth, feels great in the mouth.

D: Nice smooth beer with solid flavor. Very good balance between malt and hops, although hoppier than some of the others I've had in this style. Nothing out of this world, but nothing to complain about either. Very sessionable due to the low ABV makes this a solid every day beer. A good offering from Ballast Point.

09-24-2008 02:45:59 | More by rxdrewthejew
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

3.1/5  rDev -18.4%

Dark red amber, almost murky, body. Topped by a level two fingers of sticky off-white froth.

Big yeasty aroma. Candy sweet.

Solid semi-sweet malt as the beer hits the tongue. Earthy hops balance most of it, leaving it leaning just a tad toward the sweet side.

Mouthfeel is somewhat surprisingly light, expected something with a bit more helft, a little chewier.

Decent drinkability, no real flaws, though no real passion.

An ok amber ale. So far, Ballast Point's IPA is the easy leader of the pack.

09-20-2008 05:05:36 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of chrisafari


4.38/5  rDev +15.3%

On Cask at Stone World Brewing Bistro and Gardens. Aroma of roasted and carmel malts, with a balance of hops. Pours opaque and deep amber/red/brown, nice full off-white head. Retention is good. Flavor begins with nice smooth roasted malt and finishes with a nice hoppy (pine/roasted nuts) throat. Very nice lacing. Medium body. Drinkability is medium-high, every sip begs you to take another. Really nice on cask. Throughout there is a nice balance between the malt and the hops, neither is too overpowering. Very well done Amber Ale, should be rated higher!

09-11-2008 06:06:28 | More by chrisafari
Photo of albern


4.13/5  rDev +8.7%

This beer has a huge palate of flavors, but I'm not sure of the labeling. This is definitely not a Red Ale, although the Amber label at least fits the appearance of the beer. It pours a quite dark amber with a thick creamy off-white head that retains and laces quite well. The aroma is prodigious. I just had a Dale's Pale from Oskar Brewing, and the aroma is almost identical. There is a big hoppy nose, loads of malts, bready and biscuity malts just overwhelm. The aroma is quite pungent, but very good.

The taste is quite complex and pretty full bodied, or at least full palated, if there is such a word in the lexicon. The mid section of the beer is where the thick, creamy, deep flavored, sweet malts present themselves. There is a touch of honey, a touch of spice, a touch of some florals, but mostly just thick chewy bready malts slightly carmelized and slightly roasted. The hops get in there on the back end and into the finish. There is a bittering dryness to the beer, and some oily hop presence well balanced with the sweetish malts. The hops are tea like, slightly oily, bitter, but not your over the top estery and leafy variety. There is a nice balance to the beer. This is a really nice beer, although I'm not entirely sold on the Amber Ale label. Forget the Red Ale label all together, this isn't even in the same ballpark for that one. This is worth seeking out. L'Chaim.

Update December 2008: I very much appreciated the traditional bready malts. This has all the makings of an exceptional ale, although the amber label is misleading. The one element missing is the peaty quality.

09-06-2008 20:31:37 | More by albern
Photo of TheodorHerzl


4.15/5  rDev +9.2%

Received from AndySr15...thanks Andy

This beer pours a nice amber (duh!) hue with three fingers worth of sticky white head that dissipated quickly, but left a very nice collar of lace for the rest of the beer. The nose on this beer is dominated by caramel, toasted grain, and some floral hops coming in to round everything out. The flavor profile starts out with the sweetness of the caramel malt upfront with a citrus bitterness of grapefruit rind that balances out the sweetness quite well. The mouthfeel is exceptionally smooth with moderate carbonation with no alcohol present as well. The drinkability is fantastic on this beer, and is one of the better amber ales I've ever had from any brewer.

08-27-2008 01:55:45 | More by TheodorHerzl
Photo of WillClark


4.2/5  rDev +10.5%

Poured out of a 12oz bottle a brilliant burnt orange. Formed a nice, two-fingers worth of head that settled nicely and released sweet flower notes with a big hint of the malt character ahead. Nice little sweetness on the front with a round mouthfeel and a sweeping bitter finish that for some reason reminds me of camping out in the Calaveras woods.

Calico has a lot of character that other ambers seem to lack. The bitterness and effervescence of the body make it crisp and clean. Decent alcohol content means you can put back a few of these bad boys....which is exactly what I'm going to do.

08-24-2008 03:02:39 | More by WillClark
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.08/5  rDev +7.4%

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light coppery brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, citrus and a good amount of floral hops.

T: The taste is well-balanced with sweet flavors of caramel and citrus and a strong but not overpowering hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this a nice choice to pound down when you want a beer with some substance and a decent hop presence that won't try to knock you over.

08-23-2008 22:58:33 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of DefenCorps


4/5  rDev +5.3%

Received this as an extra from synesthesia a while back. Thanks Ian! Into my Troegs pint glass

A: Amber, not unlike the Hop Hearty I just had. Light brown head, decent retention

S: I swear i washed this glass with soap before I reused it. Smells very similar to the NG Hop Hearty, minus the leafy/earthy character of the previous beer. A little sweeter with more caramel presence and a slight nutty touch

T: Starts off hoppy with a decent citrus/orange flavor. Caramel sweetness follows with a component stronger than the Hop Hearty. Sweetness is ample and tasty. Finish is medium dry.

M: Well carbonated, pleasantly light yet fluffy on the palate, nice finish

D: I'd drink another... if not for my general dislike of Cascade beers.

08-21-2008 04:28:19 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of EStreet20

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev +6.1%

22 ounce bomber, shaker pint glass.

A - Nice reddish amber color with a good sized tan head. Color is beautiful on this one. Just a dark reddish tan color.

S - Smell a lot of nice caramel malt. Can also pick up a little bit of hop under there. Great malty nose without smelling too sweet.

T - Very nice malty brew. Flavors of caramel as well as a tiny bit of chocolate come through. Hops lend some balance and make this beer finish nice and dry.

M - Nice light/medium body here. Carbonation is a little reserved which lets the maltiness come through.

D - Def a nice pick at 5% abv for a session brew with lots of malt flavor.

Notes: Nice amber on the malty side of this wide open style.

08-13-2008 02:32:44 | More by EStreet20
Photo of illidurit


3.73/5  rDev -1.8%

On tap at the brewery. Golden amber color with a thick tan head that leaves substantial lacing. Citrus hops dripping with caramel compose the aroma. Flavor is much the same, with candied orange hops and a toasty caramel maltiness. Perhaps not enough bitterness to counter the sweetness. Full flavored and smooth, a little dirty on the palate, but very drinkable.

08-09-2008 22:22:50 | More by illidurit
Photo of arizcards


4.15/5  rDev +9.2%

Picked up a bomber from BevMo in late April for $2.79.

Beer poured a deep amber with a nice lasting head that is leaving lacing behind. Nose is quite pleasant, perfumed by malty goodness and citric hops. Taste is very balanced, toffee and caramel notes are found up front with a generous amount of northwest hops that leave a resiny residue. Mouthfeel is quite full and smooth for the style, which makes this beer special. Drinkability is near perfect. This is one of the better ambers that i have had and it is well worth the price!

08-03-2008 23:20:24 | More by arizcards
Photo of MrMcGibblets


4.1/5  rDev +7.9%

as the name suggests, this is a deep copper/amber with just a tinge of haze and an off-white to tan thick, creamy head and lacing. mostly caramel and resin in the nose with some fruit (grapefruit?) underneath. the taste is quite interesting as despite having almost no residual malt sweetness combined with the prevalence of the hop character in this it still manages to come off with the overall impression of malty depth and complexity. lively, prickly carbonation and a light to medium body lead to a crisp, bitter finish. this is a very sessionable brew and i'd love to try it on-tap.

07-28-2008 01:59:27 | More by MrMcGibblets
Photo of RedHaze


3.6/5  rDev -5.3%

Pours a nice amber/copper with a two finger head that fades to a nice cap. The foam is very sticky, leaving behind a nice lacing on the glass.

Smell; caramel and brown sugar are very evident, as well as a litte bread dough. Some spice and citrus hops are present, but stick to the background.

Taste; the hops are much more evident in the flavor with a touch of grapefruit, grass and pine. Tons of caramel, brown sugar and bread dough fill out the rest of the beer, as you would expect with an Amber.

Mouthfeel/drinkability; mouthfeel is medium bodied and very smooth, while the drinkability a good.

I'm not a big fan of ambers, but this one is pretty good. The hops add a very nice element to this beer without going overboard.

07-28-2008 00:03:43 | More by RedHaze
Photo of BeerSox


4.1/5  rDev +7.9%

12oz bottle into nonic.

Clear copper amber hue with a one finger cream colored head that slowly settles to a thin cap. Semi-solid lacing along the glass.

The caramel and brown sugar grain mixes with the sharp spicy hops.

Deep toasty grains that have a slight touch of carmelized sugar to them. The hops are sharp, and have a bit of spice in them. A touch of citrus flavor is mixed in. Full bodied with good carbonation. The grains linger for a while, but are outlasted by the hops.

This is another very enjoyable hoppy Amber Ale. I've had plenty of the ones that aren't hoppy and I feel that this is the way to go. Plus with the 5% it's sessionable. Recommended.

07-27-2008 17:17:20 | More by BeerSox
Photo of argock


4.13/5  rDev +8.7%

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into clear pint glass. No freshness date.

A: Pretty light brown with ruby edges with 1-2 finger head and ample retention and lacing.

S: Caramel and roasted malts, honey, and vanilla aromas are all there

T: Smooth and delicious roasted and caramel flavors are most prominent, with touch of earthy and floral hops to even everything out and prevent cloying sweetness.

M: Easy to drink with light-medium carbonation and sweet caramel and toffee aftertaste.

D: An excellent American amber ale with nothing too out there, but just a lot of solid goodness in delivering a great-tasting brew.

07-20-2008 04:57:25 | More by argock
Photo of Deuane


4.1/5  rDev +7.9%

A-Clear, deep brownish copper with a medium tan head that leaves spotty lace.

S-Very light sweet caramel malt with a bit of honey and a light whiff of hops.

T-Spicy hop bitterness up front with a nice roasty, malty sweetness that follows. An interesting twing of residual sweetness is offered up in the aftertaste.

M-Medium body with a good spicy crispness.

D-This is not your typical boring, malty amber. This one has a very good malt/hop balance. I wouldn't expect anything less from Ballast Point. And, at 5% I had no problem putting down 3 of these in a row. Really nice stuff.

07-11-2008 12:09:21 | More by Deuane
Photo of Seanibus


4.2/5  rDev +10.5%

This is a good looking, robust amber that serves well as a session beer because of its relatively mild alcohol content.

Pours rich coppery, with a large, lively head that leaves extensive lacing. The smell is fresh and malty, with a faint whiff of citrusy hops.

The flavor is malty, almost toffeeish, but light enough to be pleasant. It has a bready quality with just a bit of floral hops and bitterness on the finish.

The mouthfeel is strong and satisfying. This is a refreshing beer and a good example of the trendy Amber Ale genre.

07-10-2008 19:06:34 | More by Seanibus
Photo of rkuhnel


4/5  rDev +5.3%

From a 22 oz bottle this poured an attractive copper color with off-white head and good lacing. Nose of caramel malts and floral and citrus hops.

Smooth mouthfeel.

Favor of light fruit and citrus and a long bitter finish.

For its type, excellent, and one of the better ambers I have seen.

07-08-2008 20:41:26 | More by rkuhnel
Photo of PhxHorn


4.4/5  rDev +15.8%

Color is a deep orange-red, with a respectable head appearing. Smells of malt and spice, and tastes moderately of spice, malt, and yow! a respectable amount of hops in there, too. Could qualify as decent APA if it wanted to. Not quite as much hop flavor as the Green Flash amber, but one of the best amber ales I've had to date.

07-06-2008 03:03:14 | More by PhxHorn
Photo of JMD


4.13/5  rDev +8.7%

A: Deep amber tone, with big frothy head that clings to the glass.

S: Sweet carmel, bisquits, citrus, and floral hops.

T: Toasted malt, sweet bread, grapefruit, finishes bitter.

M: Moderate carbonation, very smooth drinking ale.

D: Excellent brew, almost like a malty IPA. Solid offering from Ballast Point.

06-27-2008 13:39:45 | More by JMD
Photo of rbowser

New Hampshire

4.03/5  rDev +6.1%

Pours copper in color with a slight ring of foam. Small bubbles come to the top; this has decent carbonation, appropriate for the style.

It is labeled as an Amber Ale, because of the color, but I think of this as a crystal malt heavy IPA. A little citrus aroma gives away the generous hopping of classic American hops (Cascade and Centennial).

This is a beer with that has the hopping of an IPA with more then usual level of crystal malts which drives it into the Amber range. Very well balanced between hops and malt with the balance tipping towards slight sweet caramel.

Very drinkable and well crafted.

06-23-2008 02:44:21 | More by rbowser
Photo of jim102864


4.1/5  rDev +7.9%

Poured from a bomber bottle into my nonic, nearly all red in color but for a slight brownish hue. Thin head and light carbonation. Nose was up front with candy sugar-like sweetness yet malty. Anise from cherries. Very nice, malty profile with narry a hop to be found. The taste was full bodied. Nice balance of malt and hops. Interesting sweetness at mid-tongue and finishes with a modest hoppiness. A winner. The mouthfeel was very balanced and viscous. Overall you don't have to strain to note it's features. Nice strong nose and taste. A treat.

06-20-2008 17:58:41 | More by jim102864
Calico Copper Amber Ale from Ballast Point Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 956 ratings.