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Big Eye IPA - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Big Eye IPABig Eye IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,527 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2527
Reviews: 936
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.85%

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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-22-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,527 | Reviews: 936 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Fcip78


5/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

There are a million IPAs out there, but this is in a class of US gold standard ales. Ballast Point may get more beer geeks to praise their Scuplin IPA, but big eye deserves more love out there. It's a perfectly balanced malty hop spicy and citrus infused masterpiece of an ale. At 7% abv, it just teeters at edge of session ales, but gives plenty of kick without stepping into imperial ipa land.

A must have for ipa fans! One of my favorites.

Serving type: can

01-16-2014 03:19:04 | More by Fcip78
Photo of LukeK1231

New York

4.97/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 32 oz. "Big Z" growler into a pint glass.

Appearance: Amber/golden with a 1 finger off-white head

Smell: Unbelievable!! Lots of fruit smells including pineapple, various citrus and maybe mango. Hoppy smells came thorugh almost as strong and made for a powerful yet perfect aroma.

Taste: Bitter hop taste in the beginning followed by a combination of fruits, pineapple taking the lead. Nice combination. Finish was crisp and smooth refreshing; "classic IPA" taste at the end.

Overall: A great IPA that I will make my standard until a better comes along. And at a nice strong 7% a well-rounded beer.

Serving type: growler

04-27-2011 23:00:39 | More by LukeK1231
Photo of lumikuuro

British Columbia (Canada)

4.9/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

650ml bottle, now 6.0% abv.

Appearance: Vibrant copper, clear. Thick off white head with some retention that leaves heavy lace.

Aroma: Sweet and tart citrusy hops, with a slightly curious wet malt smell that isn't bad, rather it grows on you.

Taste: Divine. Delicate lemon and tangerine flavours along with an intense physalis hop bitterness that lingers for a long time. The hops also offer just a hint of grapefruit, a touch of grass, even some orange and lime. There is even just the slightest touch of banana from the soft malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and carbonated but very quickly evaporates into an unusually dry finish for the style. A welcoming change.

Drinkability: A really beautifully balanced IPA that takes citrus hop flavours to a whole new level. This is an absolute delight.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2010 07:22:55 | More by lumikuuro
Photo of BeerSquid


4.9/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Recomended by the fine folks of Whitemarsh Beverage, Plymouth Meeting Pa.
Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A- Pours very smoothly. Settles into the glass with a light translucent orange colour. Minimal head that stays throughout the consumption.

S- Very powerful. I can honestly smell this onw from a good foot and a half away. Great sent of American Hops, pine, lemon, grapefruit.

T- Its all there. Miraculous complexity that washes over the whole mouth. Great bit that magnifys from the first sip and holds to the back of the tongue. The pine and citrus carry from the nose and really make for a spectacular brew.

M- Not overly carbonated. The flavour really concentrates to the sides of the tongue and lingers very nicely.

D- Would absloutely have this beer again. In fact, Im about to. Fantastic pick.


Serving type: bottle

07-29-2010 22:08:18 | More by BeerSquid
Photo of chargerfanjess


4.88/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had on tap Big IPA great different hop notes from pepper to pine could be columbus and chinook. Nice big head and copper clear look with tight little bubbles. Excellent malt backbone of munich taste and perfect bitterness. Great finish for a great brew.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2006 17:27:41 | More by chargerfanjess
Photo of cgstarry


4.85/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is an outstanding brew.

I found it while on vacation in San Diego and am bummed that I can't get it here in Minnesota.

The appearance is clear and slightly amber. There is nice colorful artwork on the label and when ppoured it leaves nice lacing on the way down.

The smell is bright and hoppy. Almost citrus but with a sweet malty unlerlayment.

The taste is complex and very enjoyable. Starts sweet and finished bitter and clean.

Drinkability is excellent. Too excellent. This is a strong beer and is dangerously delicious. Wnjoy with this in mind!

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2009 19:29:57 | More by cgstarry
Photo of brewdlyhooked13


4.84/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Appearance - uncapped, it begins bubble formation and starts creeping up the neck. Very fluffy into the glass, lots of bubbles clinging to the glass. A thick finger of manila foam, very sticky.

Aroma - pineapple, mango, pine, sweet citrus. Smells outstanding.

Taste - caramel malts, to the sweet side for sure. Lots of orange and lemon, some dry pininess in the background. Lots of citrus up front, drying in the swallow and aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - heavier than average, very carbonated but it doesn't come across as much during drinking.

Overall - one of the most enjoyable IPAs I've had in a while. Short list for max sessionability.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2013 02:00:29 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of yemenmocha


4.83/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Glorious dark copper color with thin micro-bubble head that retains well.

Nose is sharp/prickly citrus, maybe orange peel or tangerine. Enticing nose for sure.

On the palate is a notable (pleasant) black Darjeeling Tea taste from the malt sweetness with an ESB-like quality to the ale. This is very clean, refreshing, with most of the hop character towards the end.

Creamy characteristic across the palate. The nice head probably enhances this (good foam onto the palate at first, especially). More body than expected.

Finish is firm and somewhat dry with a smooth chalky, tea-like sweetness with hop dryness. Very satisfying!

One of my favorite and more unique IPA's. Worth seeking out!

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2007 04:35:02 | More by yemenmocha
Photo of BradBLR


4.8/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a nice amber color, orange highlights when held up to the light. The head was slightly off white and lasted the whole beer with good lacing. Wow, the aroma was a very strong floral scent you could smell while pouring it, the sign of good things to come.

The taste was all hops, accompanied by a light toffee malt taste. The hops were very strong and flavorful. The mouthfeel was good, but the CO2 was just a slight bit too weak, but nothing worth complaining about.

A great beer. One of the top 5 IPAs I've had. Give it a try if you get a chance.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2007 04:25:53 | More by BradBLR
Photo of gleemonger


4.78/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Mostly clear, deep yellowish orange & red with a nice off-white head. Some lacing, but not much, and not much retention.

Not a huge aroma, so might be a little out of date. Some pine and citrus with sweet malt. Hard to pick up much else.

First hit with some sweet yet toasty malts, but mixed with some tasty, piney, citrusy, grapefruit hops. Each of these flavors pretty well linger into the aftertaste, leaving a nice, refreshing toasty malt with not much bitterness, but just a good little punch. The very last thing to stick around is a pleasant bitterness. Super well balanced and tasty, in more of a non-West Coast kind of way, but also not overkill on the caramel malts like many of the East Coast varieties are.

Moderate body with fairly light carbonation, but just enough to keep it crisp and refreshing. Smooth and fairly creamy.

This was one of the first IPA's to break me through into loving IPA's and every time I revisit it, I still love it. I remember there being more aroma in the past, so I might have faulted it too much in that dept, but I have to review the one I'm reviewing right now. Will have to try again, maybe on tap if possible, to see if the fresher version has more aroma. For a maltier, more "balanced" version of an IPA, this one definitely stands out to me.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2012 19:41:47 | More by gleemonger
Photo of Tenor


4.75/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I was at Whole Foods and noticed an IPA from Ballast Point, which I had not heard of before..I was not disappointed.

Served on tap in a pint glass.

A- Golden orange with half a finger of foam....a little cooler than I would have liked.

S- Citrus, pine, grapefruit

T- Winner winner chicken dinner! Slight malt presence with hops that are in your face yet not overbalanced. It is what I like in an IPA

M- medium carbonation, slightly syrupy

Overall, I give this beer a 4.75...I would love to try a few more to get a better handle on it. This is a great example of an IPA.

Serving type: on-tap

03-26-2014 13:05:48 | More by Tenor
Photo of cdizinno

South Carolina

4.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my 2nd review as the first was from a bottle, this one is a growler

A: Clear copper color with a nice off white head and moderate lacing.

S: Strong citrus hop aroma and fruity sweetness is present. Mild pine, malty underneath the hops with hints of caramel.

T&M: Medium bodied with very smooth feel. Hop bitterness with nice, mildly sweet citrus hops taste. Hop flavor leaves a nice earthy taste and dry finish.

Excellent IPA. Fresher is always better, but the bottle was very good also. This growler is definitely smoother. Taste is a bit better due to the balance of hops and malts. Great quality and I almost prefer the taste of the Big Eye to the Sculpin. I'll need to try them side by side to determine my preference. This might be a while since both may never be on tap at the same time :( At least in this area!

Serving type: growler

05-08-2010 01:45:58 | More by cdizinno
Photo of DrDemento456


4.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A very typical dark amber IPA color with a nice half inch of foam that turns into a nice ring of lace.

S - Very solid pine and citrus like hops with a nice malt.

T - Wow is that balanced! The flavor of the bitter hops is is balanced by a sweet malt. I find it less dry than most IPA's I usually drink and it masks the ABV well without being too hoppy. Loved it.

M - Very light to medium. Enjoyable to drink.

D - Yes and please more! I have not had many IPA's this smooth and hopefully had this fresh but I am loving the flavor and bite. I will probably make this a regular.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 06:56:16 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of rajendra82


4.71/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear, golden amber colored body was filled with fine carbonation bubbles. The head formation was one finger thick and foamy. The aroma was full of pine straw and grapefruit peels, and was very inviting. The taste was full of grapefruit, with a massive dose bitterness. The finish was spicy and herbal, as the hops never let up. The body was a hair on the lighter side of medium dense, and the aftertaste was a little boozy. Ballast Point beer just started showing up locally, and this was fine first taste.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2013 06:10:50 | More by rajendra82
Photo of gmfessen


4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a beautiful orange-red color with a two finger, frothy off-white head. The smell is a wonderful perfume of American hops. Lots of citrus present; lemons, oranges, grapefruit and pineapple all come to mind, also some grassy pine. The taste is a floral bouquet of hops, balanced nicely with a biscuity, slightly toasted malts. The mouthfeel is full bodied with a silky smooth carbonation. Overall, this is an excellent IPA, not overboard on hops but satisfying and drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2008 23:49:33 | More by gmfessen
Photo of patoakes7


4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- A nice reddish amber almost copper in color. Nice lacing through the entire glass. Poured a finger and half head and stayed nicely through the beer.

S-Hints of citrus and pine. Very great refreshing floral aroma.

T- Taste derives alot from the nose with flavors of grapefruit, orange, and piney finish. Not alot of booze but you know it there. Love the hop flavor in Big Eye. Dry Finish

M- Pretty thick for an IPA but not in a bad way. Leaves the mouth dry.

D-Have loved this IPA for awhile, one of my favorites. Its got the perfect bite I look for in an IPA

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2011 06:46:28 | More by patoakes7
Photo of Sensaray


4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Fairly loud fizzly pour to a off white bubbly finger length head. Reddish hued amber color. Good color in my opinion.

Fresh hoppy scent. This just came to the store today and it smells really good. Sweet caramel undertones accent citrus and pine resin character.

Light spice note hits first bringing on an orange piney caramel sweet which leads to a fairly aggressive bitter finish thats pretty tasty. Hints of some spicy fruity characteristics.

Smooth and nice medium mouthfeel. Carries this beer well.

Umm, yeah. This is very good. Hoppy, balanced, this has some characters of bigger beers and its really tasty. This really sometimes could be mistaken for a dipa. Im thinkin I really like centennial hops. A lot.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 07:02:39 | More by Sensaray
Photo of OStrungT


4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a clear golden yellow, with a thick fluffy off white head. The head has orange tints in it. It fades slowly, leaving a lot of laces.

This beer has a pleasent grassy hop aroma. It has a slight lemon citrus aroma also. It has a very slight piney aroma.

This beer has a very good grassy flavor. It has just a touch of citrus in the flavor. It has avery slight bready malt flavor, but only just a little.

This beer is very smooth. It leaves a grassy aftertaste. It is carbonated to perfection.

This beer would be a great session beer. It is not overly high in alcohol. Also, the flavor is not aggressive. Also it tastes great. This is a very fine beer from the Balast Point guys. I am surprized it took me so long to review it.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2006 02:03:59 | More by OStrungT
Photo of NolanGTI


4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was really taken back by how good this beer was. First pint out of the keg it was ridiculously fresh. Poured nice and copper, 2 fingered head. Tons of lacing on the way down.

Smell was a nice mix of pine and citrus. Mouthfeel was very nice with an amazing blast of fresh fruity hop goodness. I could drink a lot of these. One of the better IPAs I have had in a long time.

Serving type: on-tap

05-29-2008 17:32:09 | More by NolanGTI
Photo of SolomonGrundy


4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy, nice amber in color. Loads of carbonation. A pleasant, creamy two fingers of head coats the glass in foamy lacing. Brilliant thus far. Deep grapefruity-hoppy arromas dance around the glass and fall into your nose. This has a fruitier, sweeter aroma than most West Coasters of the IPA-suasion. I love this. This is top notch, hop heady ale thus far. Even some warmer, rounder, more muted aromas like almond. Awesome. Oh wow, the pineapple and grapefruit notes in the flavor just blast off. There is also some other, more nuanced notes tap-dancing around on your tongue. This is world class beer. One of the best I've ver had. Unique and complex, hoppy like a Left-Coaster should be. It would take all day to pull out all the interesting flavors that are in this. It';s like trying one beer, then another and saying "If I could take this and this out of these two, you'd have a fantastic beer!" Well, that fantastic beer is this beer. I'm gonna have to try their Sculpin, because people swear by that one, but this is to Sculpin what Blind Pig is to Pliny - probably the better of the two beers, after all is said and done. This is likely one of the three or four best IPAs I've ever had. Drinkable to a fault, most could get well hammered off a bunch of pints of this. At $10.99/sixer it's also decently priced. Find this beer at all costs folks, it's worth every penny.

What I like most: Everything - I can't find fault in it.

What I like least: Nothing.

Verdict: World class IPA and one of the best beers I've ever had.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2010 06:05:26 | More by SolomonGrundy
Photo of Clydesdale

District of Columbia

4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a mostly clear orange-amber color. The tall, foamy head is of medium density, with a light amber tint. Retention is very good, and excellent lacing sticks to the glass.

S: The faintest caramel sweetness tops a primarily pale maltiness. Very citrusy hop notes of orange juice/lemon oil are prominent, but there's also an underlying grassy/herbal character present to provide some depth.

T: Very faint caramel - this is mostly a sugar cookie-ish pale malt profile. Hop bitterness is firm but not bracing. Prominent notes of orange and lemon, with fainter grapefruit. There's also a definite grassy/herbal undertone - perhaps from dry hops?

M: Medium-firm body. Carbonation is extremely smooth and supple. Some oily hop presence precedes a fairly dry finish. A well-done mouthfeel overall.

D: A very enjoyable, extremely well-brewed IPA. Centennial and Columbus work extremely well here to provide a big citric presence with a nice herbal/floral secondary note. I'd been reluctant to pick one up here on the East Coast because I wasn't sure how fresh it would be, but this is excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 02:11:10 | More by Clydesdale
Photo of joecast


4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

enormous off white head that may be as dense and firm as i have seen, with a glowing orange color.
smells just like a bowl of diced peeled oranges. now i know what others mean when they describe the citrusness of centenial.
feels like drinking orange juice as you lift the glass. just plain mouthwatering.
the bitterness hits strongly right up front but its not harsh. almost manages to overshadow any maltiness at all, but that manages to find its way out.
by the end of the bottle, some dryness comes out a bit. the finish though always seems very crisp.
one of my new favorite ipa's. the centenials really are the strong point of this, and i like it.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2004 17:45:52 | More by joecast
Photo of blackie


4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Go Pack

appearance: Pours a light khaki one finger head, pretty fluffy and persistent. Nice retention after the initial recession, even some nice lacing. The beer is the color of polised old copper.

smell: Love it. Biiig tropical, pine, and floral hop aroma with a worthy caramel-apple malt backbone. The hop aroma in itself is complex, and the malt compliments perfectly with a moderate caramelized sweetness.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is really smooth, just around or under medium...and the body a full medium. Maybe heavy for the style, but it works really well for me.

taste: Really nice malt/hop balance going on. Tropical fruit hop flavors abound, just barely getting the edge on the caramel malt. Some floral notes and sappy pine astringency, but the hops are primarily tropical. Moderate-high bitterness in the finish. Love an IPA big on both hops and malt.

drinkability: quite easy, highly recommended...doesn't seem to have gotten much love recently for some reason

from nvsblman in Get Bombed

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2007 21:12:59 | More by blackie
Photo of jwhancher


4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a clear copper color with nice long lasting white head. Smells of pineapples, mangos & other citrus like fruit with a tinge of pineness. Has a sweet smelling, sticky hop aroma to it that's also noticeable in the taste. A little too sweet for me. Wish it was a tad more balanced in bitterness. It's rather light & drinkability is good but I think the sweetness would limit me to only a few of these at a time. A nice IPA, but I think this one's not in the upper echelon.

Re-reviewed from notes on 9/8/11 after buying a bottle fresh from the Home Brew Mart. My scores reflect a change from previously. Fresh from the brewery, this is one of my favorite IPAs:

-pours amber with hop particles suspended, otherwise clear.
-smells very piney, spicy, peppery.
-hoppy taste, bitter, resin-like.
-caramel malts, slightly syrupy-like due to the sticky sweet hop complexity.
-overally - an excellent IPA!!!

Serving type: on-tap

04-28-2011 21:24:11 | More by jwhancher
Photo of richkrull


4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from Crabbicuss in N00b BIF 4. Thanks a lot man.

Poured a rich copper color with quite a bit of beige head on it. Great lacing as well.

Smell is malty at first with the hops coming through to spice it up.

Taste is very balance with a great bitter spicy hop flavor throughout. Really good tasting beer.

Mouthfeel is light with good carbonation. Smooth easy drinking beer.

I really enjoyed this beer. I wish it was available in Wisconsin. Luckily I can trade for it from the great BAs on this site.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2011 21:46:53 | More by richkrull
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Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,527 ratings.