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Big Eye IPA - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Big Eye IPABig Eye IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,784 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,784
Reviews: 950
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.61%
Wants: 91
Gots: 185 | FT: 4
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: 2,784 | Reviews: 950 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Fluke828


4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my goto IPA glass, a gold-rimmed Liefmans Goudenband Cervoise.

A-> A very transparent pale, reddish brown/amber. 2+ finger head with fabulous lacing sticking everywhere.

S-> Very hoppy up front in the nose, A fruity and piny scent with some backing malt thrown in the back end.

T-> Taste is crisp floral bitterness at first then some caramel-like malt flavoring with a citrus-pine resin towards the finish.

M-> Very light and crisp. Good bitter/carbonation balance as well as a fantastic hop and malt balance. A very refreshing brew.

D-> Very drinkable. Great balance, bitter and yet subtly sweet at the same time. Great carbonation also. Borderline session-able even @ 7%..

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2011 02:22:44 | More by Fluke828
Photo of chilly460


4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Golden orange color with a very fluffy three finger white head poured into my Sam Adams glass. Tons of lacing all the way to the bottom of the glass, retained a full finger head to the end.

S - Smell hits as soon as I started pouring into the glass, piney scent with pineapple or mango in the back, a very sweet fruitiness. Not much of a malt scent to speak of.

T - Plenty of piney hops front but never goes overboard, pretty nice. Tangerines and pineapple on the tongue as well, there's the sweet fruitiness as in the nose. The sweetness transfers right to the biscuity malt finish, cleans up nice at the end.

M - Surprisingly thick, this is medium body and more. Great with that creamy fluffy head.

D - Very nice, plenty of hops without killing you, sweet fruitiness makes it unique.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2011 21:54:52 | More by chilly460
Photo of Lemke10


4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I bought this as a mix and match 6-pack from Everhett's in South Beloit, IL for $9.99.

Pours a cloudy amber orange color with a thick long lasting head. The aroma of hops is quite strong. Has a smooth mellow taste with hops very evident but not too overpowering and finishes with lemon hints. I can definetly see why this beer is rated what it is. A must try!

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2011 04:57:41 | More by Lemke10
Photo of IllNate

British Columbia (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Brilliant copper hue, very nice clarity and color. Ample white frothy head. Great retention.

S - Great hoppy nose. Citrus and pine with a fruity kick. Bit of malt just coming through with caramel.

T - Crazy hop and yeast character. I get citrus and pine with a very interesting fruity tang (mango). Obviously quite bitter, but well within the standard not over done, which lets a bit of malt character through. Malt is nice and rich with caramel tones complements the hops nicely.

M - Smooth, carbo is well done.

D - Good.

I served this a bit high (15c) which maybe let the fruitiness in the taste dominate a bit too much.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 03:18:07 | More by IllNate
Photo of Nugganooch


4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a darker golden pale with some light amber hues. Thick khaki colored head at about 3 in. thick with some major lacing to the glass.

S: Nice upfront nose of fruity and floral hops. Pick up the presence of fresh yeast as the hop aromas fade and give way.

T: Abundent with very floral, spicey and resinous hop flavors. Sound bittering to this brew balance out big malty and caramel flavors that really warm up and come through in the end.

M: Nice and smooth with clean finish. Slight carbonation and alcohol warming.

D: Drinkability is decent but there is no doubt this is a big brew at 6.8% ABV the alcohol comes through alot. Big hops, Big malt flavors. Big Eye!

Ballast Point is a local favorite of mine and you always know what you are gonna get with a Big Eye. A massive brew loaded with hops and great malt flavors. Get to the point!

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2011 21:19:45 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of OWSLEY069


4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a clean orange-ish to yellow color with an off white head. In the aroma, citrus, mango, pineapple, and orange. In the taste, starts pine like hops to a orange citrus end, with a nice balanced malt all the way through. A hop bite and medium to light bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry citrus hop in the aftertaste. Nice hops and it could be a daily drinker.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2011 18:25:43 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of drtth


3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a standard shaker pint glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer is a bright clear orange/amber color with a ¼" head that recedes relatively soon. Sipping leaves some modest lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: The aromas are faint but piney with some citrus fruits added into to the mix. There seems to be some grapefruit here but touches of something else, maybe a touch of tangerine?

Taste: The flavors are much as expected from the nose in that there's a lot of pine resin and grapefruit, modulated with some additional orange or tangerine zest. The malt backbone stays in the back ground and serves to prevent the beer from rasping over the tongue and balances without dominating the bitterness and flavors of the hops.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to light bodied, with a good level of carbonation. The finish is moderately long, but crisp and clean with a piney bitterness that fades to dryness.

Drinkability: While I enjoyed this beer I also found myself wishing once in a while that the malt sweetness would assert itself just a bit more and pop in once in a while to break up the grapefruit/pine resin bitterness. That said I'll be happy to have this one again next time I find it since it is a good, well made beer with few things to fault.

Serving type: on-tap

02-25-2011 02:43:21 | More by drtth
Photo of jzeilinger


3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a reddish orange color with lively carbonation and lots of suspended sediment (my fault for a bad pour). The white foam head is pretty thin.

S - Faint graham cracker crust and citrus and citrus fruit. Perhaps this bottle sat in my fridge too long or was already on the way down when I bought it? I expected much more aroma coming from this beer.

T - Much better on the tongue - tropical fruity spiciness, subdued flowery bouquet, some honey appears at moments. The balance is off center with a nod going towards a hoppy profile, but in a very good way. The malt is still there, but seems like it's always a few steps behind the hops and never catches up. Taste stays even accross the entire palette until the last drop runs down the throat to create a gentle warming sensation. Big Eye leaves a spicey tropical fruit - tangerine, papaya, grapefruit coating in the mouth that is long lingering and dry.

M - The body is a little on the thin side for an IPA that pushes D-IPA Territory, could stand to use more body. Carbonation is prickly on the tongue and lively.

D - Very good and got better as it warmed up.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2011 00:31:59 | More by jzeilinger
Photo of Mississipping


3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz poured into a tulip:

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden amber color with a large off-white, sticky head that dissipates slowly and settles to a sticky foam, leaving behind decent lacing.

S: The initial smell is flora and fruity ... citrusy and somewhat sweet ... and also quite malty. Just a bit of hops and booze behind the sweeter start.

T: Sweet orange and tangerine, with a bready/biscuity malt profile dominate. Starts less sweet than the smell would have you believe. Taste transitions quickly to bitter grapefruit, grass, and pine, along with the hoppieness. Just a hint of booze. Bitter, hoppy, pine finish that lingers. While it's all there, it seems a little muted; less aggressive.

M: Slightly thicker mouthfeel than some other IPAs. A bit resiny, yet still bubbly and lively on the tongue. Medium level of carbonation which complements the stickiness quite well. Slightly drying effect at the finish, but not overwhelming.

D: Drinkability is high ... alcohol is hidden fairly well, mouthfeel is great, and the flavors are a little mild. Less to appreciate here so it goes down very quickly. Still recommended.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2011 21:09:45 | More by Mississipping
Photo of HipHop5


4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

always a treat to have a big eye in my refrigerator.
Here we go: Good one finger head on a heavy poor. It falls down quickly.

Murky dark copper amber tones with a thin lacing on my first choice witch is a tulip.

Great citrus, mango,passion fruits resin bouquet. Not to aggressive up front but hop bite show up in after taste. Sticks to the back of the tongue pretty strongly:) Nice!

Medium/ fare carbonation level, perfect to open up taste buds to rich and sweet hop flavors.

Resin Pine is predominant in mouth and nose as the temperature of the glass rise up.

Extremely smooth in the mouth and, as I said earlier, great one to keep in the home stach.


Serving type: bottle

02-19-2011 20:22:33 | More by HipHop5
Photo of warnerry


4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours translucent amber orange with a good 2-3 fingers of head and leaves a trail of sticky lacing behind. Big sweet floral aroma and citrus hops with a nice complement of malt make for a great scent. Was expecting more hops (don't see a bottled on date), though there is a nice crisp hop presence, again with citrus and florals dominating the hop profile. Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side for an IPA, but some slightly oily feeling is there. Carbonation level is good, and the finish is dry with a lingering bitterness that is very pleasant. Very enjoyable, this is going down pretty fast. Alcohol is well hidden.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2011 01:25:58 | More by warnerry
Photo of greenmonstah

New Hampshire

3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into DFH Snifter

A - A copper color with half a finger of white head. Dissipates quickly. Great head lacing.

S - Maltier and sweeter than Sculpin. Just a touch of grapefruit hop, but primarily earthy hops.

T - Grapefruit citrus, sweet malt base, and caramel sweetness. A finish of dry grain and caramel.

M - Medium body with a perfect dry finish. Sticky and sweet.

D - Goes down easy. Again I find myself wishing I could get more. The strengths of this beer complement the weaknesses of Sculpin, I'd love to try a beer that combined Sculpin's nose and taste with the appearance and feel of this beer, and hell while we're at it let's bump it up to a double IPA. You do that and you've got a real challenger for PtE.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2011 22:09:14 | More by greenmonstah
Photo of Ynot2


4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 0z bottle into a pint glass. A light golden oragne color with a cream colored head that lasted well into the beer.

A nice blend of the sweet malts and citrusy hops with some piney aroma mixed in. The citrus wins in the end, but not overpowering the malt or the pine.

The taste follows the nose. I can really pick up the grapefruit, but it is balanced well with the sweet malt and the resiny of the pine. The end has just a slight bitterness to it.

Kinda chewy for an IPA, sticks to the mouth more than I am accustomed, but a nice carbonation.

Very drinkable, not as good as Sculpin to me, but at 7% it is an easy drink that hits the spot.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2011 23:02:55 | More by Ynot2
Photo of spree92

New Brunswick (Canada)

4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Right from the start, I knew I was going to like this one.

A- Started off golden and eased into a nice, deep gold. Fades away to a yellowish pale color on the egdes. There was a tight, creamy head that greeted the nose as you go in for the first drink.

S- Grapefruit, westcoast hops, citrus peel. A real fresh smell to it. Bottle date of BE236, BJJGJ?. A touch of honey has started to rise from the depths of this great beer.

T- A lot the the smell translates over in the taste. Again, has a freshness that is so great.

M- Bitter. Just like an IPA should be, right. Lingers, transforms and grows as time passes. Carbonation is exact and will last until the glass is emptied.

D- For 6%, the Big Eye packs a punch. Hits hard and doesn't back down. I can feel it starting to weigh me down, but that won't stop me from drinking this great California beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2011 03:58:25 | More by spree92
Photo of Avantyawn

New York

3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on tap tonight from the Blind Tiger, NYC. I got my pour and was a little dismayed as it had no head and was a bit flat and not super fresh tasting. I wonder if it was the end of the keg...

A: Red amber orange see-thru, no head.

S: Fruity pungent hoppy scent. Potent and sweet.

T: This is a very sweet and tangy tropical fruit sort of IPA. It is the kind of beer that tastes good and is impressive, yet is a bit over the top in sweetness for my taste. It has a tart candy flavor to it, much like Cigar City's Jai Alai IPA. I think this would be superior if it were a fresher keg as I know Ballast Point is a fine brewery.

M: It has a very balanced feel to it. A little thin in the mouth though. Again, if this were fresher it might be a bit meatier and hearty tasting.

D: I can't rate it very high as far as drinkability as the sweetness and tartness makes it hard for me to stomach and this keg doesn't seem too fresh. I hope to try this under fresher circumstances sometime.

Serving type: on-tap

02-11-2011 05:28:29 | More by Avantyawn
Photo of GarrettMD

New York

3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - So much better than Sculpin as far as appearance. Light amber hue with half a finger eggshell white head that stays around.

S - Malt aroma melds with the earthy hops. Not too much hop aroma, maybe some hints of citrus, but not what you would expect from a west coast IPA

T - Malts still dominate, but hops are more present. Citrus hops are the main flavor, mainly grapefruit. Some slight earthy pine hops as well, but not too noticeable. Very sweet tasting, almost too sweet, but still slightly balanced.

M - Medium, slick body. Sticks slightly to your mouth. Good carbonation. Finish is sweet, sticky, and a very late bitterness. Bitter pine hops show up well after the sweetness fades away.

D - Very drinkable. Sweet, but not too sweet. I definitely want to keep going back for more. I almost feel that if you combine this beer with sculpin, you would have one of the best IPAs. All of the strengths in this beer are the faults in Sculpin.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2011 04:59:24 | More by GarrettMD
Photo of 100floods


4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Initially a two finger white head, slowly dissipates. Burnt orange, light amber hue. Very clear. Fruity-sweet bouquet. Some distinct floral and hop flavors. Not malty sweet. Pretty thick texture, juicy and chewy, very nice. I'm sensing a dominance of finishing hops in this beer. I'm getting a mix of peaches and oranges. It's not so much bitter as it is flavorful. The malt backs up those flavors but doesn't distract. This reminds me of the Marin IPA, which I like a lot for the same reasons. Big on flavor, not on bombarding your taste buds.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2011 23:23:15 | More by 100floods
Photo of TylerJones62


4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great example of an IPA. As far as IPA's go I have two controls; Stone's IPA and Anderson Valleys Hopottin.

For me, I prefer IPAs that have a more berry/fruit/citrus type of bitterness to it, where as Stone IPAs have the more floral/perfumey taste. This beer leans more towards the fruit/berry side of the track. As far as the bitterness goes, its quite moderate, not as harsh as I was expecting(from the smell).

Overall a very good beer, I would definitely recommend trying this one if your an IPA fan.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2011 19:54:24 | More by TylerJones62
Photo of beagle75


4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft service into a shaker pint glass at Selma's in Rancho Santa Margarita.

A: Clear, light amber color with one finger of diminishing white foam head. Heavy lacing remains on the glass.

S: Pungent grapefruit citrus and pine foliage form a perfect marriage of hop aromas, yet allow a glimpse of toasty grain. This beer smells exactly like an American IPA should.

T: Begins barely off-dry, with mild caramel malt and juicy grapefruit hop aromatics. The middle is drying, toasty, and strikingly herbaceous--generally clean. Bitterness surges in the finish, becoming bracing at its peak and tasting strongly of grapefruit peel. The level of astringency in the finish becomes distracting at times.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, slightly sticky on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D: Probably better known as "Not Sculpin" by IPA seekers, this beer fulfills a necessary position in the Ballast Point pantheon and sends a clear message that the brewery is so dedicated to the IPA style that they will successfully produce and market two versions of the style. Maltier than Sculpin or Green Flash's West Coast IPA, this beer reminds of some of the better IPAs commonly encountered in Oregon--Deschutes Inversion IPA comes to mind. (The most similar IPA from the San Diego area is Port's Wipeout IPA.) A very solid brew, but a little more sweetness early and less astringency in the finish could improve appeal even further.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2011 04:22:30 | More by beagle75
Photo of inlimbo77


4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a simple pint glass. Purchased at Capone's in Norristown, PA.

A: Pours a clear (filtered) amber color. One finger, off white head, which disapates quickly. Good carbonation and bubbles throughout drinking.

S: Citrus and piney hop nose. Mild malts. Not crazy aggressive.

T: Good hop flavor, as noted not aggressive. Good bit in the middle of the sip. Nice pucker aftertaste.

M: Good mouth coating, chewy taste.

D: Very easy drinking beer. I would have thought this was a 5% ABV brew when consuming. Nicely hidden.

Overall, a solid beer. The Ballast Point Sculpin is MUCH better, but this is found more easily in our parts. Good by-product if you can't get the Sculpin.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2011 16:39:54 | More by inlimbo77
Photo of madvermin


4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Soft white, foamy head tops a glassy orange/amber body. Head laces well on the glass and looks good doing it.

Aroma is of grapefruit + the rind, with some malty sweetness behind it. Hop bitterness is evident in the smell as well.

Taste is really great blend of malt and hops after the initial hop kick, as the middle of the taste is a juice-like concoction of sugar and citrus. Finish is not as clean as some other IPAs due to the sugar quality, but it makes up for it with the taste in the middle anyways.

Body is thinner than average, but enough that it isn't watery. Drinkability is pretty high, as the finish may not be perfect, but the rest of the drink is very pleasant and easy, although the abv may be too high to call this a session beer. Really nice sweet/bitter combination, and a welcome change of pace.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2011 10:43:27 | More by madvermin
Photo of smakawhat


4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass.

Poured on tap into a simple pint glass. An interesting almost yellow/cream head, with a real gorgeous copper body. Giant retention and huge head on this beer out of the bottle. It bursts into fist size proportion. Leaves a giant cap looks like a heck of fun. Big bountiful and sexy.

The Bouquet is very simple as I remember it just like on tap. Straightforward of mild grapefruits and a simple good hop nose.

Taste is a first sweetness of fruit citrus, then goes to a great mild sugar and hop mix. I remember more fresh orange juice quality when I had this but that seems to be missing on the bottle. Body is not as dense but still very good.

A solid real great tasting IPA out of the bottle.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2011 03:26:13 | More by smakawhat
Photo of unskinnyhop09

South Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

If you like the taste and lingering flavor of columbus and centennial bitterness and dry hopping, then this is the beer for you.

it has a perfect amber appearance with a perfect head and lacing that say: hey, i'm here to impress.

the smell is all hops...in fact, i would say it is an outstanding smell. very clean, sharp citrus--not unlike grapefruit. again, dry hop centennial with a decent malt balance.

the taste is not the best ever, but it is one that you will remember because how good it is. it compounds with the consumption of ounce after ounce.

mouthfeel is good. i personally like thick and oily. this one is a hint in that direction without being overbearing (but it might still be intimidating to some). i really like it.

the drinkability depends on the tolerance of the drinker. i could drink this all night, but one who is new to 7+abv should take heed.

big eye is a great brew.

Serving type: growler

01-27-2011 03:44:49 | More by unskinnyhop09
Photo of steelerguy

New York

4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Amber color with a moderate head and carbonation. The head sticks around for a bit and also coats the side with it sticky goodness. Quite a bit of particulate matter even with an easy pour.

S - Lot of citrus and early hops, with a bit of light caramel sweetness.

T - Citrus up front with some pine notes in middle and to finish. More malty then I was expecting with a little bread note to go with the caramel and base malt.

M - Moderate body, the alcohol and carbonation with a little tingle and warmth to let it finish clean.

D - Very balanced IPA, not to heavy handed, good bit of bitterness but lots of aroma also. Nice body really makes this is great IPA to enjoy a few of.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2011 01:05:51 | More by steelerguy
Photo of ocelot2500


4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear orange copper with a tight white head that leaves a good amount of lacing.

Smells of bright citrus hops with some underlying sweetness.

Tastes of a delicious hop character with a solid malt backbone. Hops have notes of grapefruit, grass, lemon peel, and some pine as well. Hop bitterness makes its presence known as well. Malts are there, but a little buried, offering up caramel notes. Fruits also come through and add to the citrus from the hops. Sweetness is moderate, but does not interfere with hop glory. I do notice some alcohol, which is a little surprising.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2011 03:14:03 | More by ocelot2500
Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,784 ratings.